In the previous episode, we had witnessed Duryodhana coming to know that the Paandavas were very much alive and it was none other than Arjuna who had lifted that heavy bow and won over the Svayamvara event. Initially Duryodhana had this doubt at that very moment itself when Arjuna lifted the bow in his hand and employed it with ease with both his hands equally. Nobody in this world had mastered this technique as Arjuna had done. Duryodhana knew this very well as he has seen Arjuna in close quarters right from childhood days at Guru Dhronaachaarya’s Gurukula. Thus, with confirmation from multiple sources from the Drupada Desha, Duryodhana understood that it was none other than the Paandavas who had married Draupati. Understanding thus, he fumed with anger and frustration! He couldn’t digest the growing stature of the Paandavas day by day. He wanted to somehow put an end to it. With this in mind, Duryodhana called for a meeting with all the seniors at Hastinapura kingdom, including King Dhirdiraashtra himself, Bhishmaachaarya, Guru Dhronaachaarya, Sahuni, Ducchaasana, etc. During the meet, Duryodhana was steadfast in invading the Paandavas immediately who were at that moment stationed at Drupada Desha. However, the entire courtroom was against such a decision. Bhishmaachaarya opposed it vehemently by saying that if Duryodhana had better ways to outsmart the Paandavas, he might focus on them, but going for a war with them isn’t an option. Guru Dhronaachaarya seconded Bhishmaachaarya in this. He was also not in favor of attacking the Paandavas.
As this intense conversation was going on, King Dhirdiraashtra quips in the middle thus, “Oh Bhishmaachaarya! Do you mean to say that we should bring the Paandavas back to Hastinapura along with their newly wed wife?” To this, both Bhishmaachaarya and Guru Dhronaachaarya said a resounding “Yes”! But as usual, Duryodhana fumed further! Duryodhana now sensed that this conversation is slowly sliding in favor of the Paandavas and if things go this way, the Paandavas are going to be back at Hastinapura in no time! Hence, Duryodhana decided that enough is enough! There was no use of continuing this conversation any further! It was a totally deadlock situation. He walked out and immediately called out for an all-out war against the Paandavas. The news reached King Drupada that Duryodhana is raging ahead with his army towards the Drupada Desha. Accordingly, King Drupada, on behalf of the Paandavas readied his troops and instructed them to counter-attack Duryodhana and Co. The Paandavas did not even enter into the battlefield and still, Duryodhana was completely taken aback by King Drupada’s army. Duryodhana faced heavy defeat and had to literally run back for his life! King Drupada’s army was way too powerful and too hot to handle for Duryodhana, who clearly lacked the skills and abilities to fight a full-fledged war!
This was even a bigger insult to Duryodhana – The Paandavas did not even make it to the battlefield, but still were on the winning side! This was it! Duryodhana breached all limits of his anger towards them. He straightaway goes back to Hastinapura, but only to find more embarrassment waiting for him. Bhishmaachaarya was angry at Duryodhana’s decision to go for a war with the Paandavas. Bhishmaachaarya angrily replied to Duryodhana thus, “Oh Duryodhana! Do you even have an iota of sense in you? I had repeatedly warned you not to go for a war with the Paandavas at this time. But you have disobeyed my words and have gone ahead with the war. This is heights of arrogance from your side of not paying heed to the words of elders! Now that you’ve faced defeat under their hands, I think this is the time to split the kingdom into two and give one half to them and the remaining to you!”
This was the first time that Bhishmaachaarya opened up such a proposal of splitting the kingdom into two halves! Till now, such a proposal was never even thought of, either by Bhishmaachaarya himself or anybody else in the kingdom, including King Dhirdiraashtra. Bhishmaachaarya made this proposal in front of everyone and it is now for the others to raise their opinions to this. Most importantly, how is Duryodhana going to accept this? Let’s witness this interesting part of the conversation in the next episode! Stay tuned! 🙂