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Author: Dr. A. Sundara
Places mentioned in the article: Jatingarameshwara, Nitturu, Udegolam, Molakalmuru, Chitradurga, Koppala, Maski, Brahmagiri, Inamgoan, Pune, Tekkalakote, Sanganakallu, Hampi, Sannati, Lothal, Kalibangan, Mahenjodharo, Harappa,
The site in Molakalmuru tq, where Rice had located an Ashokan edict in 1884 has many antiquities of importance.
M. H. Krishna in 1930 located a Ganesh shrine at the foot of the hill and the Jatinga Rameshwara temple and also temples of Ganapati, Pampapathi, Veerabhadra, Janardana, Surya, Jambu- keshwara, Arkeshwara, Chandikeshwara, etc. and some epigraphs on the hill. Author discovered in 1978, a line drawing resembling a deer on a rock near the Ganesha shrine and some pre-historic pottery pieces near the Ashokan edicts. The place has been identified as a Neolithic site dating back to 2000 to 800 B.C., and it could have been a major neolithic centre like Inamagon near Pune. The place might have been inhabited by people who worshipped huge birds, and thus was called as the place of Jatayu of Ramayana fame. Near the stone burials of the place, huge figures of stone slabs resembling humans or birds are engraved. They are also seen at Aihole, Hirebenakal, and in Andhra Pradesh. These figures look like human figures, trying to fly with their arms stretched. These have been clearly identified as of birds. About 120 km away from Jatinga Rameshwar, at Hirebenakal one such figure is clearly seen. Thus, the sites of Jattingarameshwarah, Brahmagiri, Sanganakallu, Maski, Tekkalakota, Hirebenakal, etc. indicate that during the pre-Ashokan times there were sufficiently flourishing urban Neolithic and Megalithic sites with people leading civilized life with noble values. There is no room for doubt that the region round Hampi and Jattingarameshwara, there lived people associating themselves with the traditions of Ramayana. Though Jatingarameshwara is to the south of Hampi (Kishkindha), people from the north of Hampi connected with Jatayu tradition might have migrated to this place to the south of Hampi.