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Akaradhyaksha – Khanyadhyaksha In Hinduism - Superintendent Of Mines

Akaradhyaksha and Khanyadhyaksha were the terms used to refer to the superintendent of mines in ancient Hinduism. Akaradhyaksha should be conversant with the science of metal veins in the earth and metallurgy. The person has experts assisting him and fully equipped workmen, skilled in the art of smelting and coloring gems. He inspects mines to find necessary metal ores.

Khanyadhyaksha establishes factories for articles such as conch shells, diamonds, gems, pearls, corals and caustics and looks after the commerce in them.

The akaradhyaksha was an expert in mines and metallurgy and had many assistants, competent in testing different varieties of gems, metals, etc. He inspected mines and also located new sites for mining with the help of subordinate officials. He recognized old mines by sings such as the marks of crucibles, coal and ashes. New mines were recognized by the color, smell, and taste of the rock or soil.

After finding the ores at a site, the akaradhyaksha established factories for extracting copper, lead, tin, bronze, iron, gold, and silver and also released the metals for trade. He would send the precious gems to the royal treasury.