The seventh of the Mahabharata’s 18 books is called Drona Parva. The eleventh through fifteenth days of the fight are described, with Drona serving as the supreme leader of the Kaurava army, as the name of the poem indicates. Following Bhishma’s loss, who had served as the battle’s top commander for the first 10 days, he assumed control of the army. It spans 204 chapters and has 8 upaparvas in total. The subparvas’ summaries are as follows.
Drona Parva Mahabharat Overview
(1) Dronaabhisheka Parva
This 16-chapter parva concentrates on the immediate impact Bhishma’s loss had on the soldiers of the Kuru army. The news of Bhishma’s defeat deeply upset Dhritarashtra. The Kuru government was shocked at the mighty warrior’s collapse on the bed of arrows. Bhishma was approached by Karna, who asked his permission to enter the battle while also comforting the Kauravas on Bhishma’s passing. Then he recommended Duryodhana to name Drona as the new army’s supreme commander. Drona was the teacher of the Kaurava and Pandava brothers. No one questioned Drona’s prowess as a warrior, and he was instantly named the new leader of the Kaurava army. After the Pandavas defeated Bhishma, Duryodhana was extremely furious with them. He wished to get rid of the Pandava brothers by defeating Yudhishthira. But he was aware that Arjuna’s proximity would prevent him from defeating him. Therefore, the Kauravas came up with a plan dubbed “Sakata,” the main goal of which was to seclude Yudhishthira and murder him. Through their spies, the Pandava forces learned of this strategy, which alarmed Yudhishthira since he understood that his death would demoralise the whole army and leave them open to defeat. As long as he held the Gandiva in his hand, Arjuna assured him, he could not be vanquished. He promised him to fight fearlessly as a result. Then Yudhishthira engaged in a valiant solo combat across the battlefield, dispatching several foes. On that day, tremendous damage occurs on both sides. The Kauravas, however, were the ones who suffered more setbacks. Even Dronacharya’s piercing arrows managed to decimate a sizable portion of the Pandava army. On the eleventh day of the war, the Pandavas accomplished another significant victory when Bhima defeated Salya during a protracted one-on-one conflict. Salya’s charioteer had been murdered by Bhima with his mace, causing Salya to flee the battleground at once.
(2) Samsaptakabadha Parva
There are 16 chapters in this, the Drona Parva’s second subparva. This Parva is so titled because Arjuna’s triumph against the Samsaptakas is its most notable event. The main purpose of the Samsaptakas, a band of warriors, was to assassinate Arjuna, the greatest of the Pandava brothers’ soldiers. The army was made up of tens of thousands of elephants, horses, and infantry troops in addition to thousands of soldiers and chariots. Each of them was a superb fighter who was challenging to beat, and they all shared the same goal: to kill Arjuna. On the twelfth day, however, Arjuna defeated the Samsaptakas via a series of conflicts. Sudhanwa was also slain by him. Bhima defeating Anga was one of the Pandavas’ greatest achievements in this Parva. In this Parva as well, both teams sustained significant loses. Satyajit’s death by Dronacharya was a significant setback for the Pandavas’ army.
(3) Abhimanyu-vadha Parva
This is one of the Drona Parva’s longest Parvas, spanning 39 chapters. The emphasis of this Parva is on Abhimanyu, Arjuna’s son, who possesses warrior-like skills. Many Kaurava army soldiers were slaughtered by Abhimanyu. With the help of the Kauravas, he overcame powerful rulers like Jayadratha and Rukhmaratha. The little son of Arjuna’s amazing powers astounded the Kauravas, who devised a plan to assassinate him. Along with six other soldiers he chose, Dronacharya spearheaded the assault against Abhimanyu. Unfortunately, Duhshassana’s son murdered the genius. The death of Abhimanyu shocked the whole Pandava army, which was in shock as a result.
(4) Pratijna Parva
This brief Parva, which has 13 chapters, is concerned with the immediate impact of Abhimanyu’s passing on the Pandava brothers, particularly Arjuna. When Arjuna found out that his son Abhimanyu had passed away, he was devastated. On receiving the distressing news, he passed out. The Pandava brothers were mourning his passing with one another. Arjuna, in particular, broke down in front of Krishna as the Pandava brothers did as well. The Pandava army would have lost the fight if they hadn’t been inspired once again. Arjuna was comforted by Krishna, who took control of the situation. He advised him not to mourn his son’s passing since even the sages could not believe it and because it was an illegal act to murder him. It was Arjuna’s responsibility to get revenge for his son’s death. Arjuna was instructed by Krishna to stand back up and comfort all of his siblings as well as the other monarchs who were grieving at the passing of Abhimanyu.
(5) Jayadratha-vadha Parva
With 68 chapters, this Parva is the longest of the Drona Parva. Yudhishthira informed Arjuna and Krishna that Jayadratha was mostly to blame for Abhimanyu’s death because he deceived Abhimanyu into believing he was surrounded by Kaurava troops. Until his dying breath, Abhimanyu, who had steely nerves, slew several Kaurava soldiers. Arjuna returned to the battlefield, enraged and driven by a fervent need for retribution. To get revenge for his son’s unjust murder, hell broke loose for the Kaurava army and killed tens of thousands of the opposing soldiers. He eventually confronted Jayadratha and killed him, earning the epithet Jayadratha-vadha Parva, which literally translates to “the annihilation of Jayadratha.”
(6) Ghatotkacha-vadha Parva
There are 32 chapters in this Parva. By this point in the conflict, the Kauravas were employing unjust tactics and disobeying the law whenever they had the opportunity. The Pandavas’ army suffered a great deal of casualties as a result of Duryodhana’s own actions, who were not willing to break the law in any way. This Parva also saw significant losses for both sides of the conflict. Sivi was slain by Dronacharya. Bhima murdered Dhruva, Durmada, Jayarata, Dushkarna, and Valhiki, while Satyaki killed Somadatta. Even worse, Bhima murdered five princes of Gandhari, ten brothers of Duryodhana, and seven of Shakuni’s brothers. Bhima decimated the Kaurava army while on a killing spree. The Kaurava army’s soldiers were being slaughtered in large numbers by Ghatotkacha, Bhima’s son, who was in a similar shape. The Kauravas army then turned its attention to Bhima’s son in an effort to demoralise Bhima. They ultimately murdered Ghatotkacha, leaving Bhima and the other Pandava brothers inconsolable. Both sides’ resolve to defeat one another deepens as a result of the numerous deaths that have occurred on each side.
(7) Drona-vadha Parva
There are 9 chapters in this Parva. The epic demise of none other than Drona himself is the subject of this Parva. Due to an error, Drona was slain when he got exposed. He mistookly believed that he had heard of Ashwatthama’s passing. Drona’s kid was named Ashwatthama. However, Ashwatthama, an elephant, had passed away during the conflict. Drona believed that his son had perished in battle. He was distraught, and Dhrishtadyumna, the leader of the Pandavas, took advantage of Drona’s frail moment. He was slain by taking advantage of his grief’s weak state. The Kaurava army was shocked by Drona’s passing, and panic broke out throughout their military systems.
(8) Narayananastra-mokshana Parva
There are 11 chapters in this last upa parva of the Drona Parva. Drona’s son Ashwatthama was saddened by his father’s unfair death. He made the decision to get revenge on his father because he was driven by rage. He went back to the combat and wrecked the Pandavas’ army. He had a deadly weapon known as the Narayana weapon that he used destructively in a fit of rage, killing several Pandavas army members. This weapon could destroy anybody holding a weapon. When Krishna observed the size and might of this weapon, he ordered the Panndava brothers and the soldiers in their army to lay down their weapons since doing so would negate the weapon’s impact. As Ashwatthama was abusing his abilities for unfair ends, Rishi Vyasa made an appearance and forbade him from using any weapons and from participating in the fight. After that, he was removed from the area of conflict.
You can read other chapters from the table below. Click on the respective link to understand about the summary of that book/section of Mahabharata.
Mahabharat All Chapters Summary Guide
|1) Adi Parva||10) Sauptika Parva|
|2) Sabha Parva||11) Stri Parva|
|3) Vana Parva||12) Shanti Parva|
|4) Virata Parva||13) Anushasana Parva|
|5) Udhyoga Parva||14) Ashvamedha Parva|
|6) Bhishma Parva||15) Ashramavasika Parva|
|7) Drona Parva||16) Mausala Parva|
|8) Karna Parva||17) Mahaprasthanika Parva|
|9) Shalya Parva||18) Swaraga Arohana Parva|