Emperor Bindusara had won the
title Amitraghatha (one who strikes those who are unfriendly). He had annexed
the area between the east coast and the west coast in south India and extended his empire.
He ruled over this empire for twenty-five years and died in 272 B.C. Ashoka who had come
to pataliputra from Ujjain at the request of Radhagupta, the Chief Minister, was crowned
king of Magadha after the death of his father.
What happened after this is not very clear. Perhaps Susheema heard the news of his
fathers deth and feared that Ashoka might be crowned King; he probably came from
Taxila with a large army. He came prepared to fight if necessary. But he was killed even
as he was attempting to gain an entrance to the city.
There is a story that Ashoka had all his brothers killed for the sake of the kingdom.
There is no historical basis for this story. Ashoka has spoken affectionately about his
brothers in his rock inscriptions.
The fifth day of the third month Jyestamasa of the year 268 B.C. was the auspicious day
on which Ashoka ws crowned king. Pataliputra was gaily decorated.
The auspicious time fixed for the coonation arrived. Auspicious music Sounded. Young
and radiant Ashoka entered the court, surrounded by his bodyguards. The heir to the throne
of Magadha bowed to the throne and ascended it. As the priests chanted sacred verses, the
heir was adorned with the appropriate symbols of royalty and the crown was placed on his
head. The citizens of Pataliputra rejoiced that the empire was blessed with an able ruler.