South India during Mauryan times
The Asokan edicts (c. 270-30 BCE) present for the first time a picture of the political condition in south India. Rock Edict II lists the Tamil ruling houses Cholas, Pandyas, Keralaputras and Satiyaputra as neighbour rulers, lying beyond his domain, where he is said to have made provision for two types of medical treatment: medical treatment for both humans and animals. The Mauryan empire at that time included northern parts of Karnataka and Andhra, while the Tamil kingdoms were treated as independent neighbours.
After the decline of the Mauryan power, and before the rise of the Satavahanas, many small principalities emerged. Although not much information is available about their rulers, their coins and inscriptions reveal that they were chiefs who controlled small territories.