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A collection of three caves with historical inscriptions make these hills an important place for tourists with.

Nagarjuna Hills are located 35km north of Gaya, less than two km from Barabar Hills in Jehanabad district in Bihar. Often Nagarjuni Caves are joined with the nearby Barabar Caves in one group of monuments.

There are three caves excavated in the Nagarjuna Hills - the Vadathi-ka-Kubha, the Vapiya-ka-Kubha, and the Gopi-ka-Kubha. It is an important archaeological site.

Gopi (Gopi-ka-Kubha, milkmaid) is a cave reached by stepping up a flight of megalithic steps. It has got the largest chamber in the group. The cave contains several important inscriptions, some of these testify that son of Ashoka – Dasaratha (reigned in 232 – 224 BC) – has devoted these caves to Ajivika – thus these structures might be some 50 years younger than caves at Barabar. The cave is 12.3 m long and 5.8 m wide, both ends of the chamber are semi-circular. The roof is vaulted, up to 3.2 m high. This cave has polished walls and floor – the famous “Mauryan polish”.

North from Nagarjuna Cave there is the second cave – Mirza Mandi (house of Mirza). Next to it, there is a dry well – this can explain the other name of it – Vahiyaka, Vapuiyaka Kubha, Vapya-ka-Kubha – “cave of the well”. Nearby there are remnants of several buildings – possibly viharas – Buddhist shrines. The cave contains inscription: “The Vahiyaka Cave was assigned by Dasaratha, immediately after his consecration, to the venerable Ajivikas. Other caves have similar inscriptions, just the name of the cave is different.


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