Sunday, November 20, 2011

Glimpses from Mahabharata # 20 - Duryodhana's Plot

Right from the day the Pandav entered Hastinapur, the Kaurava and especially Duryodhan disliked them intensely. He was also extremely jealous of the Pandav for they had earned the love and respect of the entire kingdom. By some means or the other, he wanted to kill the Pandav. Especially Bheem, But Duryodhan was fully aware that it would be not possible to kill Bheem through a wrestling match or with the mace. So Duryodhan had a sinister plot in mind.

One day, Duryodhan invited the Pandav for a holiday by the riverside. How could the Pandav know Duryodhan's devious mind? Thinking about all the enjoyment, they readily agreed. And what a lot of fun it was! Horse-riding, boating, campfire etc. On the ultimate day, Duryodhan had arranged for a royal feast. Bheem, who was a glutton, could not resist the many mouth- watering delicacies and sweet dishes, Happily, he ate and he ate but didn't know that a deadly poison had been mixed with his food.

In the night when the others were fast asleep, the Kaurava tied the hands and legs of Bheem and threw him into the river. The next morning Yudhishthir found Bheem missing from his bed. Presuming that he had loitered away, the other Pandav returned to the palace along with Kaurava.

Bheem who had sunk to the bottom of the river had lost consciousness but was not dead. Seeing his inert body on the riverbed, the king of "Naglok"(A serpent world under the earth) treated him against the poison. The king knew of Duryodhan and hid brothers. He gave him to drink a medicine, that in future no poison will have effect on him as well as he will be strong as ten elephants. Bheem, on recovering his strength and power, thanked the residents of Naglok for their hospitality and returned to Hastinapur.

Dharmaraj, Kunti and the Pandav who were immensely worried about Bheem strange disappearance were very happy to see him back. But Duryodhan not. He was baffled that Bheem had survived such a strong poison.

Certain about Duryodhan's hatred and jealousy, Bheem warned his brothers and mother about the danger posed by the Kaurava. This incident made Duryodhan all the more determined to kill the Pandav, as he knew that they were the rightful heirs to the throne of Hastinapur.

It was under these circumstances that Duryodhan met Karna.

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