600 – 200 BC Personalities – Chandragupta Maurya
Founder of the Maurya Empire, Chandragupta Maurya is the first paramount ruler of India. He was the son of a king of Magadha. His mother was a woman of humble origin whose caste he took, and whose name, Mura, was said to have been the origin of Maurya, adopted by his dynasty.
He strengthened the large army acquired by his predecessor until it reached a huge force of 30,000 cavalry, 9,000 elephants, and 600,000 infantry, with whom he covered all the North India and founded his kingdom from the Arabian Sea to the Bay of Bengal. In the year 305 BC, Chr. Seleucus Nicator crossed the Indus, but was defeated by Chandragupta and forced to humiliate the cease-fire, with the result that his empire was further extended to the north. Under the guidance of his tutor and the well-known political strategist Chankya, he is credited with having united most of India.
His government was autocratic and even tyrannical, but it was organized on a sophisticated system. Army and civilian service were managed by a number of planks, while the cities were governed by municipal commissioners who were responsible for the public order and the maintenance of public works. Chandragupta himself is portrayed as a barbarian splendor, to appear in public, to hear only causes, to sacrifice, to make military and hunting expeditions, and with such fearless assassination that he never takes more than two nights in the same Room was asleep.