Amaravati Stupa was grand in architecture but Amaravati has been invaded by many dynasties and after the decline of Mauryas it was vandalised and was in ruins. Sanchi Stupa was renovated a number of times and was well looked after by the Nawabs especially Shah Jehan Begum.
- Amaravati was discovered before scholars understood the value of the finds and realised how critical it was to preserve things instead of removing them from the site.
- When Sanchi was “discovered” in 1818, three of its four gateways were still standing, the fourth was in good condition.
- The rulers of Bhopal, Shahjehan Begum’s permission to take away the eastern gateway but she refused.
- Begum and her successor Sultan Jehan Begum, provided money for the preservation of the ancient site. That is why John Marshall dedicated his important volumes on Sanchi to Sultan Jehan.
- She funded the museum that was built there as well as the guesthouse where John Marshall lived and wrote the volumes.
- She also funded the publication of the volumes written by John Marshall.
- By the 1850’s some of the slabs from Amaravati had begun to be taken to different places : (a) To the Asiatic Society of Bengal at Calcutta. (b) To the India Office in Madras and some even to London.