wood gum

Chanakya (TV series)

Chanakya is a highly acclaimed 47-part television series directed by Dr. Chandraprakash Dwivedi which was originally telecast on Doordarshan in 1990. It is a fictionalized account of the life and times of the Indian economist, strategist and political theorist Chanakya and is based in the time period 340 B.C - 320 B.C.


The series is divided into three major parts -

  • The early life of Vishnugupta in the kingdom of Magadha and his expulsion by Dhanananda, King of Magadha.
  • The invasion of north-western India by Alexander, his death and the rebellion led by native Indian kingdoms under the leadership of Chandragupta against Alexander's successors in India.
  • The attack on and overthrow of the Nanda rule in Magadha and the crowning of Chandragupta as the King of Magadha.

Within this framework, Dwivedi portrays the politics and backstabbing that governed relations between various kings and officials of that time. He also covers the workings of the early Indian republics and the way of life of ordinary Indians during those times.


While the serial has gathered praise for its authenticity, particularly the way it used costumes and similar artistic devices, it has also faced criticism for having a pro-Hindutva subtext.


Chanakya and his coterie

The Greeks






  • Acharya - Teacher
  • Amatya - Councilor
  • Ashwadhyaksha - Chief Commander of Cavalry
  • Laghu - Younger
  • Maha Mantri - Prime Minister
  • Mantri - Minister
  • Raj Nartaki - Court Dancer
  • Senadhyaksha - Army Chief
  • Senapati - Chief of Defense


# Summary Original airdate
01 King Dhanananda, the last heir to the Nanda Dynasty rules the throne. Supriya Devi's son Angadha has been missing for a few days. Minister Wakranas blames Shaktar when a gold coin's missing from the salary of the workers in the palace. Date1
02 Shishupal informs Shaktar of the new taxes being imposed by King Dhanananda. The order of appointing officials for the collection of taxes on wood, gum, stone, leather, etc. Date2


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