via Straits Times, 07 December 2019: A new book published by the Indian Heritage Centre of Singapore explore’s the 2000-year-old history of the Tamils in Southeast Asia.
Co-published by the heritage centre and the Institute of Policy Studies, the book explores lesser-known aspects of Tamil history and heritage in Singapore and South-east Asia, examining evidence of Tamil connections with the region for more than 2,000 years.
Among evidence looked at are the inscriptions on the Singapore Stone, which some experts date back to the 10th century.
A key artifact in Singapore’s National Collection, the Singapore Stone was formerly located at the mouth of the Singapore River, before the British destroyed it with dynamite in 1843.
Researcher Iain Sinclair, a contributor to the book, recently identified the phrase “kesariva” in the inscriptions found on parts of the Singapore Stone.
He said it could be part of the word “parakesarivarman” – a title used by several Chola kings of the Chola dynasty, a Tamil dynasty of southern India and one of the longest-ruling in history.
The finding suggests a Tamil presence in the Strait of Singapore dating back 1,000 years.