Neo-Buddhists often claim that Adi Shankaracharya killed many Buddhists and destroyed many Buddhist shrines in Nargarjunakonda, Andhra Pradesh. They also say there is a local legend which supports this point. How far are these claims true?
Some of the baseless accusations that Neo-Buddhists have leveled against Adi Shankaracharya is that he persecuted Buddhists, destroyed Nagarjunakonda and Amaravati etc. Proselytization by force, deception or material benefits was not prevalent in those times - be it Hinduism , Jainism or Buddhism. The practice was that the vanquished in a philosophical debate would embrace the faith of the winner.
When it comes to Nagarjunakonda all the Neo-Buddhist blogs, articles etc have one reference - Albert Longhurst's work Memoirs of Archaelogical Survey of India No. 54, The Buddhist Antiquites of Nagarjuna Konda (Delhi, 1938, page 6).
If one looks at page 6, this is what is written - Local tradition relates that the great Hindu philosopher and teacher Sankaracharya of medieval times came to Nagarjunakonda with a host of followers and destroyed the Buddhist monuments
So basically A. Longhurst has provided no reference other than local legends, and the Neo-Buddhists keep citing his work as proof