SAKUNI’S END

Sakuni survived in the Mahabharata war till the penultimate day. He had seen Bhishma incapacitated, Drona decapitated, Karna slain, Dussasana mutilated and every single brother of Duryodhana who fought on his side killed. He knew that the Kaurava commander- in- chief Salya, under whom he was fighting, would fall any moment, and after that, it …

AS DURYODHANA FELL

Duryodhana fell when Bhima hit his thigh hard, and then he tore his wounded enemy him up to his navel. As blood gushed out, Bhima made a tikaa (“ritual mark”) with it on his forehead. Then with his left foot he crushed his victim’s regal crown studded with precious gems. Still wild with anger and …

The Story of Durdasa

Durdasa of Sarala’s Mahabharata, the first retelling of the classical story in Oriya in the fifteenth century, strongly reminds one of Yuyutsu of Vyasa’s Mahabharata. Since Gandhari’s children were born at the compassionate intervention of Durvasa, all her children were given names beginning with the syllable du, as an expression of gratitude to the illustrious …

On Two Acts of Revenge

There are two major acts or revenge in Sarala’s Mahabharata (also called Saaralaa Mahaabhaarata here, following popular usage, in which the creator’s name becomes part of that of his creation): Duryodhana’s and Sakuni’s. Duryodhana avenged a perceived wrong done to his father by destroying his maternal grandfather, all his sons, his close relatives and friends, …

YUDHISTHIRA

There is an interesting episode in Karna Parva of Saaralaa Mahaabhaarata which is as follows: On the sixteenth day of the Mahabharata war, Bhima killed Dussasana, and poured his blood on Draupadi’s head, and as the blood trickled down her face, she licked it with relish. That night she sent for Bhima. Krishna was with …

KRISHNA’S LAST DECEIT

In Sarala’s Mahaabhaarata (also called Saaralaa Mahaabhaarata), Krishna acted deceitfully many times. By asking for the impossible he ensured that the Kurukshetra war took place. True, he asked for just two villages for the Pandavas, but he characterized those villages in such a way that Duryodhana could never have given them. As Sakuni told Duryodhana, …