In the previous episode, we had witnessed Duryodhana conspiring yet another plan to take on the Paandavas. He now decides to send them off to the Vaaranaavatha Desha along with their mother, Kunthi Devi, so that they can “live happily” there and Duryodhana can live happily here at Hastinapura. As Kanika has already done his job, King Dhiridiraashtra is in a confused state of mind as to how to proceed further. On one hand, he was having affection towards Yudishtra and the Paandavas, because they are his brother Paandu’s sons. On the other hand, his affection towards his own son Duryodhana is equal or greater than the affection towards the Paandavas. Duryodhana is now targeting the softer side of King Dhirdiraashtra to push through his agenda. Let us see what conspires now.
As we move into this section, we are getting into the next “Upa-Parva” called the “Jatu-Griha” Parva. We might have known this very well. “Jatu-Griha” means “Wax palace” or in Tamil “Arakku Maaligai”. As Duryodhana plans to send off the Paandavas to the Vaaranaavatha Desha, he has a wicked internal notion. He wants to build a palace full of wax and other inflammable items and make the Paanndavas live there. As they start feeling comfortable, one night, he would burn the palace and kill them amidst the huge fire. This was Duryodhana’s intention. Now what happened? How did this conspire? Was Duryodhana successful in his pursuit? Let us rewind a bit and witness the background story.
Yudishtra, as we had witnessed earlier, is trying his best to rule the kingdom with all the aspects of “Dharma”. He is trying to establish a “Dharma Raajya” at Hastinapura, along with King Dhirdiraashtra. With this, all the people are starting to like Yudishtra in a special way. His name and fame is growing day after day. This is irking Duryodhana as he is fuming with anger. With this, he decides to call Purochana, who was Duryodhana’s good friend. Duryodhana is conspiring a huge plan to trap the Paandavas somehow and kill them. He thus calls Purochana and explains to him thus, “Oh Purochana! You are one of my good and trusted aides. Thus, I’m planning to give you a responsibility, which you’ve to implement in a secretive manner without the knowledge of anyone!” As Duryodhana explains thus, Purochana agrees to the deal and wants more details. Duryodhana explains thus, “Oh Purochana! I’ve already told my father, King Dhirdiraashtra, to send off the Paandavas to the Vaaranaavatha Desha. Accordingly, King Dhirdiraashtra had spoken to the Paandavas and they accepted it as well. Before they depart, you go there quickly and with the team of workers that you have with you, build a huge and an attractive palace with the help of inflammable items like wax, oil, jute, etc. The palace should be made up of all these items, so that it would easily catch fire. Moreover, the palace should be in such a way that it would be extremely attractive to live there. The Paandavas should never know even a bit that the palace is made up of all these inflammable items. Once you finish building the palace, give me an update. I shall make sure that the Paandavas are being sent off to live in this particular palace at Vaaranaavatha Desha!”
As Duryodhana explains thus, he continues further: “Oh Purochana! Let them start living there and you also live along with them like a royal and an obedient servant. Let them develop a good faith and belief in you. After a few days, once they develop that faith in you completely, you burn down the palace during the wee hours of the night when all of them are fast asleep. Since you’re building the entire palace with all inflammable items, the building would catch fire immediately. So there wouldn’t be any time for them to escape out. Once you lit the fire, you run away from that place. Upon seeing the entire palace on fire, the people should come to a conclusion that there was a huge fire accident in the palace and with this, the Paandava brothers were burnt to death. With this, our mission would be accomplished!”
Saying thus, Duryodhana entrusted this great conspiracy in the hands of Purochana. Listening to all this carefully, Purochana immediately pressed himself into the task that was given to him. He quickly goes to Vaaranaavatha Desha and begins constructing the inflammable palace. This is happening on one side. But on the other side, something else is going to happen. What is that? Is there a foil for Duryodhana’s plan? Let us wait till the next episode to find out the thrilling set of events that conspired after this! Stay tuned! 🙂