|Father||Vajrakumara or Subahu|
According to Jain tradition, Dridhaprahara was a son of king Vajrakumara of Dvaraka. When his mother was pregnant with him, a great fire destroyed the city. Jain saint Jainaprabhasuri saved his mother, he was born sometime after the destruction of Dvaraka.
According to the 13th century Yadava court scholar Hemadri's Vrata-khanda, Dridhaprahara was the second son of a universal king named Subahu. His ancestors were originally lords of Mathura, and later ruled Dvaraka. When Subahu divided his kingdom among his sons (the other sons are not named), Dridhaprahara received "the southern land" as his fiefdom.
No historical evidence connects Dridhaprahara or his dynasty to Dvaraka: after rising to prominence, the dynasty started claiming descent from the legendary hero Yadu, whose descendants (called the Yadavas) are associated with Dvaraka. The dynasty's claim of connection with that city may simply be a result of their claim of descent from Yadu rather than their actual geographic origin. Epigraphic evidence suggests that the dynasty likely emerged from a Kannada-speaking background. The name "Dridhaprahara" may be a Sanskritized form of the Kannada name "Dhāḍiyappā", which was also borne by two of Dridhaprahara's successors.
The Nasikkya-pura-kalpa section of Jinaprabha-suri's Vividha-tirtha-kalpa provides following account of Dridhaprahara's rise to power: Once, cattle thieves raided his town, and stole the people's cows. Dridhaprahara single-handedly fought the thieves and retrieved the cows. The local Brahmins and other citizens honoured him with the title Talarapaya ("the protector of the village"). The same text mentions that he was a devotee of the eighth Jain tirthankara Chandraprabha.
Historian A. S. Altekar theorizes that Dridhaprahara was a warrior living around 860, when Pratihara-Rashtrakuta wars would have brought instability to the Khandesh region. He probably protected the region against enemy raids, because of which people started paying him taxes, and his family rose to prominence.
Dridhaprahara is the earliest historically attested ruler of his dynasty, and finds a mention in the Vasai (Bassein) and Asvi inscriptions. He is said to have established the city of Chandradityapura (modern Chandor).