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Draupadi Protected

2) Draupadi Protected

Draupadi realized now that no one in the Rajyasabha would come forward to save her modesty. She continued to think: ‘My powerful husbands have become slaves. The elders like Bhishma and Drona are of no help. My mighty father and brothers are far away in their State. All other relatives and supporters are also outside Hastinapur. Now who can come to my rescue?’

She closed her eyes and tried to find out the last resort available, if any. Suddenly a name sparkled in her mind. With remembrance of that name a divine shock of electric current passed through her body. ‘O my God! How can I forget his name? 

‘My dearest friend, my purest love and my most respected superman on the earth! 


‘Yes, Krishna is the only person in the world who can save me today. 

‘He is the Protector of Dharma and he will definitely stop the adharma being carried out in this Rajyasabha. He respects women so much that he will do anything to protect the modesty and dignity of a woman. 

‘He will surely come to save me, notwithstanding wherever he is.’

With remembrance of the name of Krishna, Draupadi became surprisingly relaxed and calm. All her worries just vanished. She also gave up the sari clutched by her so far to protect her modesty. 

She felt that now no efforts were required, as if she had surrendered to some supreme authority. With folded hands she started to chant: ‘Krishna! Krishna!’

Duhshasan was surprised to see that Draupadi had given up the sari clutched firmly so far. At first reaction, he became happy thinking that Draupadi had accepted his supremacy and considered her undressing inevitable. He therefore continued to pull her sari further. He had already removed almost half of the sari so far. The heap of removed sari was becoming higher and higher with every thrust and he was enjoying it. 

But to his surprise, now Draupadi was neither opposing him nor trying to keep her sari in place. She was just chanting something with closed eyes and folded hands. The signs of fear and helplessness had gone away from her face and she was looking like some holy woman praying to God. Duhshasan therefore hesitated in pulling her sari further.

When Duhshasan heard the name of Krishna chanted by Draupadi, he laughed loudly at her and asked: ‘O foolish woman! Your Krishna is sitting in Dwarika, hundreds of miles away from here. When no one present here is able to protect you, how will Krishna be able to save you? If you really wish to stop your stripping, just accept Duryodhan as your husband. I know that my elder brother has a soft corner and loving heart towards you. He will make you the Empress of Hastinapur. So, enjoy all the happiness of the world with him and forget Krishna, he cannot do anything to save you.’

Draupadi replied calmly with confidence: ‘Krishna can do anything and everything.’ 

Then she continued to chant the name of Krishna again.

Duhshasan got dazed to hear these words. Something sparkled in his mind: ‘These words seem familiar! Krishna can do anything and everything. These words… I have heard these words many times. Oh! These words are my own words. My mind often keeps telling me these words. Uncle Shakuni is also repeatedly saying these words and always tells us to be cautious while dealing with Krishna.’ 

Duhshasan had a bitter experience during his childhood in dealing with Krishna, which was continuously reminding him that Krishna can do anything and everything. With these thoughts, Duhshasan paused for a while. His hands stopped pulling the sari of Draupadi, his eyes gazed and his mind transitioned in a flashback.


He was eleven years old then and was studying in the school of Guru Dron, along with his brothers and cousins. One day, when they were learning and practicing wrestling, Krishna and his elder brother Balram had come to visit the school and to meet all of them. 

He had heard many stories of miraculous adventures of Krishna, but had not seen Krishna personally so far. He had heard that Krishna, in his tender age, had killed many powerful demons sent by Kansa to kill Krishna. Not only that, at the age of just eleven years, Krishna went to Mathura and killed Chanur, the powerful Chief wrestler of Mathura Kingdom, in a deadly wrestling bout. Thereafter Krishna killed mighty King Kansa bare handed and freed his parents imprisoned by Kansa for years together.

On the basis of all these stories, Duhshasan had imagined that Krishna must be having a giant body like an elephant and aggression like a bison. He must be having a hard and cruel face, thick moustaches, big and blood red eyes, frightening appearance and beast like killing attitude. 

But when Duhshasan saw Krishna on that day, his imaginary figure of Krishna vanished instantly. Initially he was not ready to believe that this handsome and charming smart boy with a normal height and tender body could be Krishna himself. 

Krishna was shorter by three-four inches in height and almost half in body weight than him. So Duhshasan reached to a conclusion that either this boy may not be Krishna or the stories heard about him may be fictitious. Otherwise, such a delicate boy can kill demons, only if he knows some magic.

Krishna had worn bright yellow dhoti and angavastra. Krishna used to wear clothes of bright colours as an indication of his active and energetic personality. He had also tied a yellow scarf on his head stylishly, with a colourful peacock feather attached to it, showing his love towards nature and concern for the environment. Peacock feather had become an icon of Krishna, as he always wore it on his head since childhood. Due to this peculiarity, he was easily recognizable from a distance or in a crowd. 

Krishna had worn flower garlands on his wrists and shoulders again indicating his love towards nature. Krishna was from the royal Yadav Dynasty of Mathura. However, he grew up as an ordinary cowherd in childhood. He therefore didn’t like to wear royal clothes, ornaments or crowns. Instead, he preferred simple apparels indicating his informal and homely approach. 

Krishna was having a dark but shining complexion, bright and sharp eyes and charming face. His dark black and long curvy hairs had spread on his shoulders beautifully. But his prime attraction was his alluring smile. His adorable sweet smile was making the people his fans, particularly all the women. He also respected women a lot. He was therefore very popular in women circles.  

Another important quality of Krishna was his cool temperament. He was able to keep himself cool even in the direst situations. He therefore was able to find a way out, even in the cases of the most difficult catastrophes too. He was also known for his unconventional decisions, a surprise element for his opponents.

Krishna had one more peculiar characteristic also. He was always talking with his opponents with direct eye to eye contact. While doing this, he was able to read thoughts of his opponents through reflections of their eyes, expressions on their face and their body language. People therefore believed that Krishna is a God, as he can read the thoughts of others.

Balram, elder brother of Krishna, was taller than Krishna and also had a massive muscular body. He was a strong, powerful and energetic man but was also hasty and aggressive by nature. As he was aware of his limitations, he always used to follow the path and advice of his younger brother.

Krishna and Balram bowed down to Guru Dron with due respect. Dron welcomed and embraced them with love and showered blessings on them. 

Krishna greeted and met all the students with his evergreen smile. Duhshasan also felt that there was some magic in Krishna’s smile and way of talking. Because whoever he was talking to was getting impressed and was believing whatever said by Krishna. Krishna was talking with everyone so politely, so respectfully and in such an interesting way that everyone was becoming anxious to hear him. People therefore used to form flocks around Krishna.


When Krishna met and embraced him, Duhshasan felt that Krishna’s body was soft, tender and delicate like the body of a kid. His mind immediately started to compare the soft and slim body of Krishna with his hard and massive body. 

Immediately a splendid idea spurred in his mind: ‘If a wrestling bout is arranged with Krishna, I would easily defeat Krishna with my massive body, aggression like a bull and power like an elephant. If this happens, I will become a real hero and my stories will be circulated instead of stories of Krishna.’

Duhshasan was in the habit of making frequent fights with other students without any reason. In the end, he would knock down his opponent with the help of his massive body and wild power. Then he would sit on the chest of his opponent to crush him down further and enjoy the screams of his opponent. Duhshasan liked an idea to crush down delicate Krishna in a fraction of a second and to enjoy sitting on the chest of crying Krishna.

Duhshasan made no delay to put his idea in action. He immediately went to Sage Dron and requested with folded hands: ‘Respected Guruji, please permit me to have a wrestling bout with Krishna.’

Dron immediately knew the real intentions of Duhshasan. But he also knew the skills and abilities of Krishna. He was therefore not prepared to see humiliation of his student at the hands of an outsider. He refused to accede to the request: ‘Dear Dush, you are still learning wrestling. You are yet not ready for any bout.’

‘But Guruji, I would learn something from a bout with Krishna. Please allow me. Please, Guruji.’ 

Dron got annoyed and looked at Krishna who consented with a flicker of eyes. 

Dron therefore agreed: ‘OK, but only one bout, dear Dush.’

‘Yes, Guruji, as you please,’ Duhshasan was sure that one bout was adequate to crush Krishna.

‘But keep in mind my lessons taught so far. Bouts and wars are being won by power of mind and not by power of body,’ Dron reminded his student.

‘Yes Sir’. 

But Duhshasan had won many bouts with the help of body power. He was therefore not agreeable to the advice of his teacher. ‘How power of mind can win a bout? It is only the power of the body that wins a bout,’ he murmured.

Duhshasan and Krishna both reached the center of the wrestling arena circle. Dron told them to shake hands as a gesture of friendship. When Duhshasan grabbed Krishna's hand, he felt that it was very hard and strong. He could not understand how Krishna's soft hand just before a few minutes had become so hard.

Duhshasan did not know that Krishna had achieved a skill of increasing blood circulation in desired body parts by practicing Yog and Pranayam. By concentration and power of mind Krishna had increased blood flow in his hands and made them hard and strong as required for the bout. 

After shaking hands, both opponents moved backward up to the boundary of the circle. When Dron lowered his raised right hand as an indication of a start of the bout, both of them started to walk towards the center.

Duhshasan had already decided to apply his usual strategy. He used to run fast towards his opponent and at the last moment was jumping with full power on the body of the opponent. His heavy body weight and thrust created by running was resulting in falling down of his opponent, with Duhshasan sitting on his body. This was his proven strategy for a definite win by him. 

As per this strategy, he started running towards Krishna. Krishna walked slowly towards him. Duhshasan increased his speed. Calm and cool, Krishna continued walking slowly keeping watch on the eyes of Duhshasan. Duhshasan increased speed of running to the extreme and when reached nearer to Krishna, he jumped in the air to make the final assault.

Up in the air, he saw Krishna just below him, looking up at him with his usual smile. Now only a fraction of a second and he would be sitting on the body of Krishna and also on the top of the world. He roared loudly to frighten Krishna and leaped on Krishna like a wild leopard.

Next moment he found that he was lying upside down on the ground. His mouth, face and entire body was filled up with the soil of the arena. His thrust and power had resulted in his falling on ground so fiercely that his entire body was paining hard.

Duhshasan could not understand why Krishna was not below his body. Then where is he? He looked up and sideways, but Krishna was not there. He could see other students, gathered to see the bout, laughing at him, but where was Krishna? 

Duhshasan looked backwards and he found Krishna standing upright there and looking at him with his usual smile. Krishna said in a soft tone: ‘Brother Duhshasan, are you alright? Please, get up.’ Krishna extended his hand towards Duhshasan and helped him to get up.  

Krishna had revealed Duhshasan’s strategy early. When Duhshasan jumped in the air, at the very last moment he just slipped away to the right side. Krishna was so active and agile that Duhshasan could not see Krishna’s movements. Duhshasan therefore fell down on ground where Krishna was standing a second before and suffered pains due to his own weight and thrust. Krishna had won the bout without any physical effort, with the help of his skills and power of mind.


Duhshasan had not lost his courage and confidence even after his easy defeat. He was still confident that he could defeat Krishna. So he requested his teacher again: ‘Please Guruji, Let me have another bout, please.’  

Now Dron also wanted to teach a lesson to Duhshasan thru Krishna. So he granted permission for the second bout.

Second bout started. This time Duhshasan decided to change his strategy. With the result of the first bout, he could understand that as he ran very fast, he was not able to control his body at the last moment, when Krishna slipped away. But now he will use his power and body structure in a different way to defeat Krishna. 

He would reach near to Krishna slowly and will catch the right hand of Krishna with his left hand. Then catching his waistline by his right hand, he will lift Krishna up in the air and will throw him on the ground. This strategy was proven one as per the teachings of Guru Dron. 

But he forgot that in wrestling bouts, every lesson of attack has an opposite lesson of protection too. Krishna was an experienced wrestler and knew each and every lesson of attack and protection too. When Duhshasan tried to catch his right hand, he moved his right hand up and backwards. Duhshasan lifted his body slightly and tried to catch the right hand of Krishna again. But Krishna moved his hand further backward. 

Duhshasan had to lift his right leg to extend his body further towards the right hand of Krishna. Krishna was waiting for this moment only. He immediately caught right leg of Duhshasan by his left hand and moved it upward slightly and effortlessly. Duhshasan was standing on only left leg and that too in an extended position. So he instantly lost his balance and fell down on ground in upright position with a loud bang. 

Duhshasan could hear loud laughter by his fellow students for his shameful defeat again. In fact, all the students had enjoyed Duhshasan’s defeat, as he used to harass them frequently. They became happy as Krishna had taught him a good lesson.


Duhshasan, lying in an upright position, could see Krishna standing near his feet with his usual smile. At that time the sun shining in the sky had reached exactly behind the head of Krishna. Duhshasan saw numerous rays of lights emanating from the head of Krishna, looking like an auspicious aura as seen in pictures of Gods. 


Duhshasan’s eyes got dazzled by direct sunlight and he was not able to see clearly, but he felt that Krishna was looking like a giant figure with his head touching to the sky. Baffled Duhshasan thought: ‘My God! Krishna looks like a God! Otherwise, how can he throw me twice on the ground so easily and effortlessly?’ 

Krishna extended his hand towards Duhshasan and helped him to get up. He said sympathetically with his trademark smile: ‘I hope you are fine, brother Duhshasan.’ 

Duhshasan nodded but could not raise his head. He was full of grief and shame. He could not look towards his teacher or fellow students. A thought had occupied his mind: ‘Krishna can do anything and everything.’


In a fraction of second, all these thoughts passed through the mind of Duhshasan. He became upset with the memory of Krishna. He was still standing upright with the sari of Draupadi caught firmly in his hands. Duryodhan, Karna and Shakuni were shouting at him to pull that sari further. He tried to pull it, but was not able to move his hands.

From the confidence of Draupadi and his own experience of childhood, now Duhshasan started to believe that Krishna can do anything and he may come anytime to save Draupadi. He looked all around to check whether Krishna had really come. 

Suddenly he saw the face of Krishna in the shining lamp of Rajya Sabha. It looked exactly the same as the giant shining figure he had seen in childhood. He had seen this face repeatedly in his wild dreams. 

Duhshasan got baffled and looked towards the other side to get away from that smiling face. But he was surprised to see that face again in another lamp on that side too. He moved his head again, but found the illusion of that face everywhere. 

Now he turned towards Draupadi and felt that smiling Krishna was standing just beside her and was asking mischievously: ‘Brother Duhshasan, what are you doing?’

Duhshasan was not ready to face Krishna anymore. He believed that Krishna was either a magician or God. In both cases, he can’t defeat Krishna. With these thoughts, his body started to shiver. His heartbeats increased, muscles loosened and hands stopped working. He was no longer able to pull the sari of Draupadi as if it had become heavy like a mountain. 

The sari slipped from the hands of Duhshasan and exhausted Duhshasan collapsed on the ground. Whole Rajyasabha was surprised to see this scene. They were not able to realise exactly what happened to mighty Duhshasan, but they understood that perhaps almighty God had punished him for his misdeeds.


Draupadi realized now that Krishna has, directly or indirectly, protected her modesty. She regained her pride and covered her body with the sari. Her fear and helplessness had gone away and she was shivering with anger now. With tears in her eyes and anger in her heart, she blasted and cursed all the men present in Rajyasabha. 

‘Listen, you all coward courtiers present here. None of you have dared to protect the dignity of a woman and that also of your own daughter-in-law. Shame to you all! You will not get peace even in hell. Your heirs will be ashamed of you for your inaction today. 

‘Also keep in mind that I am a daughter of the great king Drupad and sister of mighty prince Dyumna. I am not going to forget this humiliation till all of you are punished and punished to the extreme. 

‘I, Draupadi, born by the blessings of the God of Fire, Agnidev, curse you all that the fire emanating from my heart will burn you and your Hastinapur State to ashes. 

‘And you rascal Duhshasan! You dared to touch me with malice intentions. You dragged me by my hair and you tried to undress me. Listen O wicked demon! I swear that I will not tie my hair till I wash them with your blood. Yes, your blood! Then only the fire of anger and hatred ignited in my heart will calm down.’

Bhim could not control his emotions hearing such a terrible oath by Draupadi. He became furious and blasted in a thunderous voice: ‘Draupadi, I will ensure that you fulfil your oath soon. In the name of my father Vayudev, the God of Wind, I swear that I will tear off the chest of scoundrel Duhshasan with my bare hands and get you his blood to wash your hair. Not only that, I will drink the blood of that wicked miscreant demon too!’

‘And I swear to behead that Sutaputra, who has dared to insult Draupadi,’ said Arjun angrily.

Now it was the turn of Sahadev to bring out his anguish. As per his cool temperament, he said calmly: ‘My elder brothers have rightly chosen punishments for Duryodhan, Duhshasan and Karna. However, they have perhaps forgotten Uncle Shakuni, the chief villain of the vicious Four and the real culprit behind this ugly episode. He has fraudulently defeated my respected brother Yudhishthir in a dice game, with a bad intention of humiliating us. I, therefore, swear to pierce his chest with my mighty sword.’

Entire Rajyasabha got stunned to hear the horrible oaths by Draupadi and Pandavs. The proceedings of Rajyasabha started with just playing a game, had taken a dangerous turn and was heading towards a deadly fight among Pandavs and Kaurav cousins.


But the bad days of Hastinapur had yet not started. Queen Gandhari entered into Rajyasabha at this juncture. She had got information through her maids about what was happening in Rajya Sabha. She therefore rushed there to stop the nuisance created by his shortsighted sons and cunning brother. But she reached very late, as what was not supposed to happen had already happened.

Gandhari became sad to know what had happened in Rajyasabha. First of all, she regretted and apologized to Draupadi with folded hands and emotional tone: ‘My daughter, I am so sorry for your insult and humiliation today. I am equally disturbed and unhappy for the unacceptable behaviour of my sons. However, please spare my Hastinapur. Do not curse it, please do not curse it.’   

She embraced Draupadi sympathetically and tried to calm her. Both women shed tears on abuse and torture of a woman by the male dominant system.

A person passing through painful times needs two things most: sympathy and condolence. Gandhari provided both and made Draupadi calm and comfortable.

Then Gandhari turned towards her sons: ‘I am ashamed today that you both are my sons. You have ruined the pride and prestige of the Kuru Dynasty and Hastinapur Empire. I will never forgive you both and brother Shakuni for your shameful act today.’

Finally, she scolded her husband Dhritarashtra too: ‘Respected Emperor, how can a daughter-in-law of our family be humiliated in this way in your presence? Have you become blind from your heart too? You should have intervened well in time to ensure that such horrible incidents do not take place. I am very much disheartened today. I fear your name will be written in the history books in black letters for your inaction today.’

Dhritarashtra got ashamed with Gandhari’s harsh words. He was also frightened by terrible oaths taken by Draupadi and Bhim. He realized now that as a head of the Rajyasabha it was his prime responsibility to control the situation, but he had failed in his duty. 

Wise men foresee the calamities and ensure precautions in advance. Ordinary men take action when calamities strike. But foolish men suffer from calamities and regret afterwards for their inaction.

Dhritarashtra belonged to the last category. 

He regretfully apologized to Draupadi with folded hands: ‘O daughter, please forgive your blind uncle. I am really ashamed and have become your culprit. I cannot reverse what has happened, but I will be happy if I can render something to you. Nothing is adequate to heal wounds on your heart, but still, I wish to give you three boons. Draupadi, please ask for whatever you want.’

Gandhari also urged: ‘Draupadi, it is your right to get whatever you like from your uncle. So do not hesitate and ask for it.’

Draupadi had now gained his pride and confidence back. She bowed to Dhritarashtra and put up her first demand with folded hands: ‘Respected uncle, if you are really pleased, first of all release Emperor Yudhishthir from slavery.’ 

It was only Yudhishthir whose blindfolded gambling had put Draupadi in great trouble. Still Draupadi first of all requested for freeing Yudhishthir, not even freeing herself. Whole Rajyasabha cheered to observe her respect and devotion towards her husband Yudhishthir.

‘I am very happy to get a discerning daughter-in-law like you. Dear Daughter, I release not only Yudhishthir, but all Pandavs and you from slavery. Now ask for a second boon.’ Dhritarashtra gave her much more than what was asked. 

‘Please return whatever Yudhishthir has lost today in gambling.’

‘I happily return everything Yudhishthir has lost today, including the throne of Indraprasth. Now ask for a third boon.’

‘Respected Uncle, you have given me everything I wanted. Now I don’t want anything more.’

All the present in Rajyasabha again cheered for contentment and royal attitude of Draupadi. She had demanded things belonging to them rightfully and she was not interested in getting anything more. 

Duryodhan became very angry and disappointed as whatever he had won has been returned by his father. But he was not able to utter a single word in presence of his fierce mother. He rubbed his palms in desperation and cursed his bad luck. 

After reversing the awful effects of gambling in toto, Gandhari took Draupadi back to her palace.