|Goa - History
Goa has been a coveted territory through the annals of history. Numerous kings and empires, from the Mauryas to the Satvahanas, Kshatrapus Bhojas Chalukyas of Badami Rashtrakutas Dutch, English, French and Portuguese have fought for its possession and founded their empires here. Its recorded history goes back to the ancient times when it was part of the Mauryan Empire and called by several names such as Gopakapattana, Gomant, Gowapur and Gomanchala. Goa was a colony of the Portuguese till in 1961 Indians forced Portugal out of their tiny stronghold.
Though Goa’s recent four hundred year old history is devoted to the Portuguese and their influence, it has passed through the hands of several empires and dynasties before. Its history can be traced all the way back to the 3rd century B.C. when it was part of Mauryan empire, and was ruled by the Satavahanas and Chalukyas. Its original inhabitants were native Dravidians who where gradually conquered and outnumbered by the Aryans, who ambitiously advanced into the south around 1500 BC. Goa became India's maritime power under the rule of the Kadambas who ruled from 1008 AD to 1300 AD. The Muslims first took Goa in 1312, but were defeated by a Vijayanagara king Harihara I, in 1370, who used Goa's port to establish trade relations with Arabia. Then was established the Bahamani Dynasty around 1440 who founded Old Goa and assumed control of this strategic port. The Muslims returned with the conquest of Goa by Yusuf Adil Shah of Bijapur and Muslim pilgrims from all over India embarked from here on their journey to Mecca.
After that, the Dutch, English, French and Portuguese all began their struggle for Goa’s possession and it was in 1510, that Alfonso de Albequerque finally captured Goa from Yusuf Ali Adil Shah. It was a bloody struggle that ended with the massacre of most of the Muslims; the Portuguese then appointed a Hindu as Governor. The Muslims were regarded as a common enemy, and relations were established between the Vijayanagara and Portuguese empires. Hinduism flourished until the Inquisition in 1540, when all the temples were destroyed in Old Goa and Hindus began fleeing inland. Goa then became the capital of the Portuguese empire in the east and the area began to flourish. The emergence of Dutch and British domination on the seas saw a decline in the affluence and prominence of Goa. The Dutch tried to conquer the port twice but failed both times. The Marathas also kept up their efforts to claim Goa. The Portuguese remained in Goa until 1961 when growing international pressure and the threat from the Indian armed forces they had to leave. Goa then become a union of Indian territory and achieved statehood only in May 1987.