Udyoga Parva - 2

Udyoga Parva - 2

Udyoga Parva - 2

The Pandavas had seven akshauhinis while the Kauravas had eleven. Meanwhile, Drupada’s priest met King Dhritarashtra and conveyed the message from Drupada. Bheeshma applauded him and called for peace. But Karna objected, saying Duryodhana will not return the kingdom since the Pandavas had been identified before the completion of thirteen years of exile.

Dhritarashtra then sent back the priest, promising to send a messenger later. He then sent his trusted aide, Sanjaya to meet Yudhishtira to offer a message of peace. Sanjaya was welcomed by Yudhishtira, who enquired about the health of the Kuru elders. Sanjaya praised the valour of Yudhishtira and his brothers and conveyed the message of peace.

Yudhishtira then said that peace can come only if Indraprastha was returned to them. Sanjaya then returned to Hastinapura. He then met Dhritarashtra and warned him since he was supporting the unworthy, the destruction of the Kauravas was imminent.

Sanjaya conveyed Yudhishtira’s message in the assembly. Bheeshma endorsed this and criticized Duryodhana for following the advice of Karna and Shakuni who were evil. Sanjaya again explained the might of the Pandavas and their allies. He highlighted the achievements of Arjuna. To this, Dhritarashtra said he feared Bheema’s anger the most.

Duryodhana asked his father not to fear and said no one could defeat him in battle. He reminded him that they had more soldiers on their side than the Pandavas. He said that with Karna, Ashwatthama, Drona, and Bheeshma on his side, his victory was assured.

Bheeshma then said that since Karna had obtained his weapons by deceiving Parashurama, his valour was of no use. To this, Karna said he would not fight in the war as long as Bheeshma was commanding the Kaurava forces and walked out from the hall.

Sanjaya then reminded the assembly that the Pandavas had the support of Krishna, who was none other than the Lord incarnate. Vyasa who arrived there, also informed that Krishna and Arjuna were none other than Narayana and Nara. Even after all the advice, Duryodhana refused to agree to peace.

In the Pandava camp, Krishna told Yudhishtira that he would go to Hastinapura to resolve the issue peacefully. Bheema then asked Krishna to try and ensure peace. To this, Krishna laughed at Bheema asking why he was frightened of war. Bheema then promised to destroy the Kurus in battle. Krishna praised Bheema, saying his words were only to test Bheema’s intentions.

Draupadi then reminded Krishna about her humiliation. She asked Krishna how she could have peace until those who humiliated her were punished. She told him that if the Pandavas don’t fight, her old father and sons would fight with Abhimanyu leading them. Krishna then promised Draupadi that those who insulted her will die in battle. He then proceeded to Hastinapura.

Dhritarashtra, on hearing about Krishna’s arrival, decided to welcome him and wanted to gift him riches, elephants, and horses. Vidura advised against this, saying that Krishna only wanted peace. Bheeshma again asked Duryodhana to return the Pandavas their kingdom. He refused to do so and said that he would capture Krishna so that the Pandavas would be forced to surrender.

Krishna reached Hastinapura and was welcomed by Dhritarashtra. He met Kunti who had continued to stay in the palace. He assured Kunti that the Pandavas were in good health and would soon achieve victory. Krishna stayed the night at Vidura’s house, refusing to accept Duryodhana’s hospitality.

…. to be continued