- The Arthashastra (IAST: Arthaśāstra) is an ancient Indian treatise on statecraft, economic policy and military strategy
- identifies its author by the names Kautilya and Viṣhṇugupta, who are traditionally identified with Chāṇakya (c. 350–-283 BC)
- was a professor at Taxila University and later the prime minister of the Maurya Empire।
- traditional identification of Kauṭilya and Vishnugupta with the Mauryan minister Chanakya would date the Arthaśāstra to the 4th century BC।
Translation of the title
Different scholars have translated the word "arthaśāstra" in different ways.
- R.P. Kangle – "science of politics," a treatise to help a king in "the acquisition and protection of the earth."
- A.L. Basham – a "treatise on polity"
- D.D. Kosambi – "science of material gain"
- G.P. Singh – "science of polity"
- Roger Boesche – "science of political economy"
- Arthaśāstra argues for an autocracy managing an efficient and solid economy.
- discusses the ethics of economics and the duties and obligations of a king
- The Arthaśāstra also focuses on issues of welfare (for instance, redistribution of wealth during a famine) and the collective ethics that hold a society together.
Arthashastra deals in detail with the qualities and disciplines required for a Rajarshi - a wise and virtuous king.
"In the happiness of his subjects lies the king's happiness, in their welfare his welfare. He shall not consider as good only that which pleases him but treat as beneficial to him whatever pleases his subjects" - Kautilya.
- Kautilya says that artha (Sound Economies) is the most important; dharma & kama are both dependent on it.
कौतिल्याजी ने राजा को क्या सुजाव दिया है
Duties of the King
If the king is energetic, his subjects will be equally energetic. If he is slack (and lazy in performing his duties), the subjects will also be lax and thereby eat into his wealth. Besides, a lazy king will easily fall into the hands of enemies. Hence the maharaj should himself always be energetic. He shall divide the day and the night, each into eight periods of one and half hours, and perform his duties as follows:
|First 1 1/2 hrs. after sunrise||Receive reports on defence, revenue, expenditure|
|Second 1 1/2 hrs. after sunrise||Public audiences, to hear petitions of city & country people|
|Third 1 1/2 hrs. after sunrise & Last 1 1/2 hrs. before noon||Receive revenues & tributes; appoint ministers and other high officials & allot tasks to them|
|First 1 1/2 hrs. after noon||Write letters & dispatches, confer with councillors, receive secret information from spies|
|Second 1 1/2 hrs. after noon||Personal: recreation, time for contemplation|
|Third 1 1/2 hrs. after noon & Last 1 1/2 hrs. before sunset||Inspect & review forces; Consult with Chief of Defence|
|First 1 1/2 hrs. after sunset||Interview with secret agents|
|Second 1 1/2 hrs. after sunset||Personal: bath, meals, study|
|Third & Fourth 1 1/2 hrs. after sunset & First 1 1/2 hrs. after midnight||Retire to the bed chamber to the sound of music, sleep|
|Second 1 1/2 hrs. after midnight||After waking to the sound of music, meditate on political matters & on work to be done|
|Third 1 1/2 hrs. after midnight||Consult with councilors, send out spies|
|Last 1 1/2 hrs. before sunrise||Religious, household & personal duties, meetings with his teacher, adviser on rituals, purohitas, personal physician, chief cooks & astrologer|
- The qualities of leadership (which attracts followers) are: birth in a noble family, good fortune, intellect & prowess, association with elders, being righteous, truthful, resolute, enthusiastic & disciplined, not breaking his promises, showing gratitude (to those who help him), having lofty aims, not being dilatory, being stronger than neighbouring kings & having ministers of high quality.
- The qualities of intellect are: desire to learn, listening (to others), grasping, retaining, understanding thoroughly and reflecting on knowledge, rejecting false views and adhering to the true ones.
- Kautilya says - Quarrels among people can be resolved by winning over the leaders or by removing the cause of the quarrel - people fighting among themselves help the king by their mutual rivalry.(क्या बात है कौटिल्य जी )
- gambling is most dangerous.
- most serious consequence is addiction to drink, followed by, lusting after women, gambling, and lastly hunting.(हमारे राजनेता क्या करते है ,यही तोह करते है )
Seven ways to greet a neighbor
Kautilya recommended seven strategies in dealing with neighboring powers to Chandragupta Maurya.
The strategies are:
- Sanman - Appeasement, non-aggression pact(जो हम करते है)
- Danda - Strength, punishment(पाक क साथ क्यूँ नही करते)
- Dana - Gift, bribery
- Bheda - Divide, split, separating opposition
- Maya - Illusion, deceit
- Upeksha - Ignoring the enemy
- Indrajala - Faking military स्ट्रेंग्थ
Maintenance of law and order
A conducive atmosphere is necessary for the state's economy to thrive. This requires that a state's law and order be maintained. Arthashastra specifies fines and punishments to support strict enforcement of laws. The science of law enforcement is also called Dandaniti.
Wildlife and forests
The Mauryas firstly looked at forests as a resource.(हमारे जंगल घट रहे है!!!!) For them, the most important forest product was the elephant. Military might in those times depended not only upon horses and men but also battle-elephants; these played a role in the defeat of Seleucus, Alexander's governor of the Punjab.(हमारी रननिति ऐसी थी की हमने सिकंदर के गोवेर्नोर को हराया और आज देखो हमारे navy चीफ बयान देते है की की हमे चीन से मुकाबला करने की क्षमता नही है ) The Mauryas sought to preserve supplies of elephants since it was more cost and time-effective to catch, tame and train wild elephants than raise them।Kautilya's Arthashastra unambiguously specifies the responsibilities of officials such as the Protector of the Elephant Forests:
On the border of the forest, he should establish a forest for elephants guarded by foresters. The Superintendent should with the help of guards...protect the elephants whether along on the mountain, along a river, along lakes or in marshy tracts...They should kill anyone slaying an elephant.
The Arthashastra also reveals that the Mauryas designated specific forests to protect supplies of timber, as well as lions and tigers, for skins. Elsewhere the Protector of Animals also worked to eliminate thieves, tigers and other predators to render the woods safe for grazing cattle।
In modern literature
- In the Brad Thor novel Blowback, terrorist Khalid Alomari uses a copy of the Arthashastra and material looted from the remains of a lost caravan of Hannibal's to create a biological weapon based on an ancient version of rabies। The Arthashastra and related content play a huge role in this book.( इस आतंकवादी को अक्कल आई लेकिन हमारे राजनेताओ को नही आई अब तक की वोह अर्थशास्त्र के हिसाब से चले)