Every year, hundreds of South Koreans take a trip to Ayodhya in Uttar Pradesh to revisit their roots. Puzzled?
The Karak clan of South Korea traces its lineage to King Kim Suro of the Gaya kingdom (not to be confused with Gaya, Bihar), and Queen Hur Hwang-ok. Legend says that the Queen, also known as Suriratna, was from a distant kingdom, interpreted by some scholars as Ayodhya.
While there are arguments to the contrary, the connection has nevertheless been established, and the city of Ayodhya also has a memorial dedicated to the Queen.
It is said that this queen travelled to Korea in 48 AD and married the King, who founded the Geumgwan Gaya empire in southeastern Korea. They had ten children, and their progeny resulted in the present-day Karak clan to which a considerable number of Koreans belong.
The Central Karak Clan Society sent a delegation to India last year, which met with CM Akhilesh Yadav and proposed the construction of a larger monument in memory of the queen who forged the connection between these distant countries.
Tomb of Hur Hwang-ok in Gimhae, S. Korea (By Rémi Cormier, Wikipedia)
While scholars doubt the authenticity of this piece of history for various reasons, it is a fascinating bit of lore, and Korean television also aired a popular TV show based on this story, Suro Of Geumgwan Gaya.
Authentic or not, we can be positive that this connection will go a long way in fostering goodwill between India and South Korea!
Information source: zeenews