Ashoka and Buddhism
When Ashoka became Buddhist: 4th year of his rule.
When he invaded Kalinga: 8th year.
Ashoka was a Buddhist when he waged the Kalinga war. After the war, he killed 18,000 Non-Buddhists who allegedly “insulted Buddhism”.
Buddhist emperor Ashoka killed 18,000 Ajivikas & Jains because a Nirgrantha Jain of Pundravardhana (Bengal) named Jnatiputra drew a picture of Buddha prostrating at the feet of Mahavira. This information comes from Buddhist sources.
Ashoka waged wars even after Kalinga. He sent a 10,000 men army to crush the revolt of natives in Takshashila. He further conducted pogroms of Ajivikas and Jains after Kalinga.
- Mahavamsa, Ashoka’s pillar edicts, and Divyavadana.