Paschimadhikaran

Introduction to Paschimadhikaran

Paschimadhikaran was among the Important Tribunals in the history of the Lichhavi Dynasty. It is ascertained to have been established during the Lichhavi Dynasty.

The Lichhavi Kings had conquests from the Gandaki River in the West to the Dudhkoshi River in the East. Therefore, Historians have posited that the tribunal was a link between the central administration and the western region.

The precise functions performed by Paschimadhikaran cannot be confidently expressed as only a few Inscriptions have mentioned them with any significance. It was nonetheless an important tribunal.

Some scholars suggest that it may have served as a court of justice or a dispute resolution forum. Some even argue that it was primarily a symbolic institution on the western gate of the royal palace. It is said to have been conferring prestige and honor to the Lichhavi rulers.

The Epithet of “Shree” has been bestowed upon Paschimadhikaran. This title was reserved for only the most important men and offices of the dynasty. It served as a mark of distinction and respect which must have been the case with Paschimadhikaran.

Paschimadhikaran was unique to the Lichhavi dynasty similar to Purvadhikaran and Bhattadhikaran. Other Tribunals such as Kuther, Sulli, Ligwal, and Mapchowk belonged to both Kirat and Lichhavi Dynasty.

Functions of Paschimadhikaran

Inscription of Paschimadhikaran

Religious Activities

The Function of Paschimadhikaran, according to the Inscriptions, was to conduct religious activities and protect and maintain religious temples and places.

It includes overseeing the upkeep of important temples, conducting religious ceremonies and rituals, and dealing with any disputes or conflicts that arose among the populace concerning religious matters.

King Amshuverma‘s inscription at Nabahil specifically delegated the task of maintaining the Shankar Narayan Temple to the tribunal.

Similarly, inscriptions at Naksal and Ganeshsthan also assigned Paschimadhikaran with the responsibility of looking after the temples and religious sites in the area.

Western Administration

Some historians, such as Rewati Raman Khanal, have suggested that the tribunal was primarily concerned with the western region of Nepal, and acted as the chief administrative office for this region. They argue that the word “Paschim” means west. .

According to this view, Paschimadhikaran was responsible for overseeing the judicial and administrative functions of the western regions of Nepal. It acted as a bridge between the capital city of Kathmandu and the western regions. It also played an additional role in protecting religious temples and buildings.

However, other evidence suggests that Paschimadhikaran was actually located within the royal palace of Kathmandu and was not directly involved in the administration of the western region. Its name may have been derived from its position in the western part of the palace.

After the reign of Amshuverma, Paschimadhikaran’s duties were delegated to local villages. The Panchalik System was introduced.

Conclusion

Paschimadhikaran was one of the Administrative Tribunals of the Lichhavi Dynasty. The Specific Purpose of this Tribunal is unknown. It partook in Religious Activities.

Scholars have also argued whether the tribunal was mainly concerned with the governance of Nepal’s western area or if it was only a symbolic organization inside the royal palace.

Citation

Pokhrel, A. (2023). Paschimadhikaran – Itihasaa. Encyclopedia of Nepali History. https://itihasaa.com/lichhavi-administration/paschimadhikaran/