Chapter 26 Draupadi’s Anger and Sorrow
As directed by his lord, Prathikami travelled to Draupadi. She heard him say: “O beloved princess, Yudhishthira was tempted by the dice game and bet on even you, but lost. You are now a part of Duryodhana. You will now have the position of female servant in Duryodhana’s home as a result of my arrival at his request ”
The wife of the monarch who had performed Rajasuya, Draupadi, was perplexed by this unexpected revelation. Asked she: “What do you say, Prathikami? Which prince would give his wife in marriage? He has no further items to pawn.”
Prathikami said, “He played offering you as a stake since he had previously lost all other belongings and had nothing else left.”
Then he detailed how Yudhishthira had lost everything and had ultimately betrayed her after forfeiting his siblings and himself.
Even though the news was heartbreaking and soul-crushing, Draupadi quickly regained her composure and shouted with fury burning from her eyes: “Return, charioteer. Inquire of the player if he lost his wife or himself in the game initially. Pose this query in front of the entire assembly.
Then you can take me when you bring me his response.” Prathikami entered the gathering and addressed Yudhishthira, asking him the query posed by Draupadi.
Yudhishthira was still silent.
Duryodhana then ordered Prathikami to bring Panchali there so she may confront her husband. Once more, Prathikami approached Draupadi and respectfully informed her that cruel Duryodhana wanted her to go before the assembly and address her own query.
Draupadi responded: “No. Bring up the subject again in front of the group and demand a response.”
Prathikami did this.
Duryodhana was furious and went to his brother Duhsasana, saying: “This idiotic man is terrified of Bhima. Even if you have to pull Draupadi here, go get her.”
When given this order, the evil Duhsasana immediately rushed out on his mission. He walked up to where Draupadi was and yelled: “Come on, why the delay? We now own you. Be brave, lovely woman. Now that you have been won over by us, make yourself pleasant to us. Attend the meeting “And in his agitation, he threatened to drag her there without her will.
With her heart broken, Panchali sprang up trembling and began to escape for safety to the queen of Dhritarashtra’s inner quarters. Following her quickly, Duhsasana grabbed her by the hair and brought her to the gathering.
We describe how the sons of Dhritarashtra descended to do this most heinous of actions with a shudder of disgust.
Draupadi managed her distress as soon as she entered the meeting and pleaded with the elders present: “Could you agree to me being staked by the king, who was also duped by evil people who were skilled at the game? How could he stake anything at all now that he was no longer a free man?”
Then, with her arms extended and her streaming eyes raised in wretched pleading If you have loved and honoured the mothers who carried you and gave you life, if the honour of being a wife, sister, or daughter has been precious to you, if you believe in God and dharma, do not abandon me in this horror more horrible than death, she pleaded in a voice racked with sobbing.
The elders dropped their heads in sorrow and humiliation at this heartbreaking scream, which sounded as though a helpless fawn had been struck down to death. Bhima could no longer contain himself.
A roar of wrath that shook the very walls soothed his swollen heart, and he turned to face Yudhishthira and said bitterly, “You have treated the daughter of Drupada worse than they would have by leaving her at the mercy of these thugs. Even if they were professional gamblers, they would not stake the harlots who live with them. I can’t take this unfairness anymore. You are to blame for this terrible act. Bring the fire, Brother Sahadeva. His hands that threw the dice will be burned on fire by me.”
However, Arjuna gently rebuked Bhima: “You’ve never talked in such a way before. The plan hatched by our adversaries is entwining us in its webs and inspiring us to do evil. We shouldn’t give in and participate in their game. Beware.”
Bhima managed to restrain his rage with superhuman willpower.
The sorrow of Panchali was too much for Vikarna, the son of Dhritarashtra, to bear. He stood up, stating: “Heroes of the Kshatriya, why are you silent? Although I am only a young person, your silence begs me to speak. Listen. A cunningly planned invitation lured Yudhishthira into the game, and he promised this woman even though he had no right to do so because she is not solely Yudhishthira’s. Simply because of that, the bet is prohibited. Additionally, Yudhishthira had already forfeited his freedom; how therefore could he have the right to give her as a stake? There is also an additional objection. It is against the rules of the game—under which neither participant may demand a particular bet—that Sakuni proposed her as a commitment. If we take into account all of these factors, we must acknowledge that Panchali was not legitimately won by us. This is what I think.”
When the young Vikarna bravely spoke, the insight that God had given the assembly members immediately enlightened their minds. There were loud cheers of approval. They yelled: “The Dharma is now safe. The Dharma is now safe.”
Karna stood up at that time and said, “O Vikarna, you set the rules while being a mere stripling, disregarding the fact that there are seniors there. The family into which you were born is being harmed by your ignorance and haste, much as the arani’s flame kills the stick that it is fueled by. When a bird soils its own nest, it is sick. When Yudhishthira was a free man in the beginning, he surrendered all he had, which naturally included Draupadi. Draupadi was so in Sakuni’s custody already. Nothing else needs to be said about the situation. Even the clothing they are wearing now belong to Sakuni. O Duhsasana, take hold of the Pandava and Draupadi robes and deliver them to Sakuni.”
The Pandavas threw off their top clothes to demonstrate that they were prepared to pursue the path of honour and justice at whatever cost as soon as they heard the terrible words of Karna. They felt that they had to withstand the test of dharma until the very end.
When Duhsasana realised this, she went to Draupadi and prepared to forcefully take her clothing. She pleaded for heavenly pity and assistance because all attempts to help on Earth had failed: “O “She cried out, “Bhagwan of the World, God whom I adore and trust, do not desert me in this desperate situation. You are my only haven. Guard me.” And then she passed out. Then, even as the evil Duhsasana began his horrible deed of tugging at Panchali’s robes and decent men trembled and turned away, a miracle was performed by the grace of God.
Duhsasana laboured vainly to remove her clothes because as he did so, ever-new ones could be seen covering her body. Eventually, a huge mound of splendid clothing was heaped up in front of the crowd, and Duhsasana gave up and sank down in exhaustion.
The crowd shook in awe at this miracle as honourable men worshipped God and sobbed. Bhima repeated the awful oath, “May I never enter the blessed dwelling of my forefathers until I rip open the breast and drink the blood of this immoral Duhsasana, this humiliation of the Bharata race,” with trembling lips.
Suddenly, jackals howling could be heard. Strange discordant sounds emanating from all directions, including those of grazing donkeys and predatory birds, foretold impending disasters.
Dhritarashtra, who saw that this occurrence would lead to the extinction of his species, once again performed bravely and wisely. He beckoned Draupadi to his side and made an effort to comfort her with kind and loving words. He then remarked, turning to face Yudhishthira: “Because of how innocent you are, you have no adversaries. The sin that Duryodhana committed should be forgiven in your magnanimity, and you should forget about it. Reclaim your empire, wealth, and everything else to enjoy freedom and prosperity.
Arrive back in Indraprastha.” The Pandavas then exited the hall of curses, confused and in awe of the miracle that was their quick deliverance from disaster. But it was too enjoyable to put up with.
There was a protracted argument at the Kauravas’ palace after Yudhishthira and his brothers had left. Duhsasana, Sakuni, and others encouraged Duryodhana to criticise his father for derailing their well set schemes just as they were about to succeed.
He cited Brihaspati’s maxim, according to which no instrument that aimed to eliminate powerful foes could be deemed improper.
He spoke on the abilities of the Pandavas and voiced his view that using deception and exploiting their pride and sense of honour was the only way to defeat them.
Any kshatriya worth their salt would accept the offer to a game of dice.
Duryodhana convinced his adoring father to reluctantly and unfavourably approve of a scheme to tempt Yudhishthira to a game of dice once more. As a result, a messenger was sent to follow Yudhisthira when he left for Indraprastha. Before Yudhishthira arrived at his destination, he approached him and requested him to return on behalf of king Dhritarashtra.
Yudhishthira responded to this request by saying: “Both good and evil are inevitable results of fate. Simply put, we must play again if necessary. A challenge to roll the dice cannot be declined honourably. I have to concede it.” In fact, Sri Vyasa says: “An antelope of gold has never existed and will never exist! Rama yet pursued what appeared to be one in vain. Undoubtedly, the judgement is first damaged when disasters are on the horizon.”
The entire assembly attempted to talk Dharmaputra out of playing with Sakuni when he returned to Hastinapura. He appeared to be only a pawn used by Kali to lighten the load of the entire universe. The stake in the game was that the losing party would be exiled to the forest with his siblings, spend twelve years there, and then spend the next year undercover. They should return to exile for another twelve years if they were recognised in the thirteenth year.
Naturally, Yudhishthira lost this battle as well, and the Pandavas accepted the vows of those who would enter the jungle.
The assembly’s participants all bowed their heads in shame.
Keep Mahabharat Book at Home and Read Daily – DO NOT FALL TO FAKE PROPAGANDA and Allow Enemies to Weaken our Dharma and Bharat
This historical epic Mahabharat is known as fifth Veda. It is a common misconception spread by mlecchas; muslims and christian missionaries, and secular Hindus that reading Mahabharat or keeping it at home will likely lead to arguments and fighting. All of this misinformation was spread by illiterate mlecchas and anti-Hindus, and it is completely incorrect. It is done to mentally weaken Hindus so that they avoid reading Mahabharat. Because Mahabharat invokes bravery, pride and sense of confidence in Hindus.
Keep a copy of Mahabharat at home and read it online at the HariBhakt website. Mahabharat is rightly called the fifth Veda for Kaliyuga people because it is a tool and guidance to invoke confidence and bravery in Sanatan Dharmi Hindus.
You can read complete Mahabharat by following Chapter links given below. You can check Glossary of Mahabharat here.