|Born||Valmiki's ashram, Brahmavart, Kingdom of Kosala (present-day Bithoor, Uttar Pradesh, India)|
|Dynasty||Raghuvanshi Ikshvaku Suryavanshi|
Kusha or Kusa (Sanskrit: कुश) and his twin brother Lava were the children of Rama and Sita. Their story is recounted in the Hindu epic, the Ramayana. Hindu traditions claim he founded the city of Kasur in ancient times, though historical record shows the city was actually founded in 1525 by Pashtun migrants from what is now Afghanistan. His brother Lava is traditionally believed to have founded Lavapuri (current day city of Lahore).
The imperial line that ruled Kingdom of Benares-Kashi and the Maurya Empire, which ruled South Asia from 320-185 BCE, claimed descent from Kusha. Kusha is said to be an Raghuvanshi Ikshvaku Suryavanshi.
Birth and childhood
According to the Ramayana, A pregnant Sita was banished from the kingdom of Ayodhya by Rama due to gossip of the kingdom folk. She then took refuge in the ashram of the sage Valmiki located on the banks of the Tamsa River. Sita gave birth to twin sons, Lava and Kusha, at the ashram and were educated and trained in military skills under the tutelage of Sage Valmiki. They also learned the story of Rama.
Lava and Kusha chanted the Ramayana in the presence of Rama and a vast audience. When Lava and Kusha recited about Sita's exile, Rama became grief-stricken and Valmiki produced Sita. Sita, struck with embarrassment and grief, called upon the earth, her mother, to receive her and as the ground opened, she vanished into it. Rama then learnt that Lava and Kusha were his children.
In some versions, Lava and Kusha capture the horse of the sacrifice and defeat Rama's brothers and their army and when Rama came to fight with them. Sita intervened and unites father and sons.
Lava and Kusha became rulers after their father Rama and founded the cities of Lavapuri (currently identified as modern day "Lahore") and kusha respectively.
- Nadiem, Ihsan N. "Kasur ancient name". Punjab, Pg.111. Google Books.
- Chopra, Gulshan Lall (1940). Chiefs and Families of Note in the Punjab. Government Printing.
- Sikand, Yoginder (2011-07-19). Beyond The Border: An Indian in Pakistan. Penguin UK. ISBN 9789352141326.
- Nadiem, Ihsan H. (2005). Punjab: land, history, people. al-Faisal Nashran. ISBN 9789695032831.
- Vishvanath Limaye (1984). Historic Rama of Valmiki. Gyan Ganga Prakashan.