ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Rise and Decline of Sankaradeva s Vaishnavism in Fifteenth and Sixteenth Centuries

in Fifteenth and Sixteenth Centuries P K Bhattacharyya Before the advent of Sankaradeva, the famous Vaishnava reformer, Kamarupa and Kamata-Cooch Behar were under the influence oftantrism, Sankaradeva made an all out effort to put a stop to these practices and senseless killings of animals. Although Sankaradeva's idea of establishing new society by putting an end to the caste and class distinctions made tremendous impact in Cooch Behar, it gradually lost its popular base. The rulers of Kamata- Cooch Behar gradually showed their inclination towards the orthodox Brahmanical faiths which always assign a special position to the ruling class. Apart from this there was the distinct erosion of economic base of the 'satras' of Cooch Behar as a result of greater involvement of outsiders like the Muslims, the Armenians and the Bhutanese in the big business transactions of the country. This, in turn, jeopardised the position of the local business com- munity who had proved themselves to be the mainstay of neo-Vaishnavism.

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