श्रीमद् भगवद्गीता – Srimad Bhagavad Gita – Page 1

|| श्री परमात्माने नमः ||

||अथ श्रीमद् भगवद्गीता ||

||अथ प्रथमोऽध्याय:||


धृतराष्ट्र उवाच |

धर्मक्षेत्रे कुरुक्षेत्रे समवेता युयुत्सव: |

मामका: पाण्डवाश्चैव किमकुर्वत सञ्जय ||१-१ ||

dhṛtarāṣṭra uvāca

dharma-kṣetre kuru-kṣetre
samavetā yuyutsavaḥ
māmakāḥ pāṇḍavāś caiva
kim akurvata sañjaya

dhṛtarāṣṭraḥ uvāca — King Dhṛtarāṣṭra said; dharma-kṣetre — in the place of pilgrimage; kuru-kṣetre — in the place named Kurukṣetra; samavetāḥ — assembled; yuyutsavaḥ — desiring to fight; māmakāḥ — my party (sons); pāṇḍavāḥ — the sons of Pāṇḍu; ca — and; eva — certainly; kim — what; akurvata — did they do; sañjaya — O Sañjaya.

Dhṛtarāṣṭra said: O Sañjaya, after my sons and the sons of Pāṇḍu assembled in the place of pilgrimage at Kurukṣetra, desiring to fight, what did they do?

There could not be a more dramatic backdrop for a spiritual discourse than brother warring with brother. Yet, paradoxically, the site of the Mahabharata war is a sacred place. Hence the first two words of the Gita are – ‘Dharmaksetre Kuruksetre’. Dharmaksetra is the abode of righteousness and Kuruksetra means the land of strife and struggle. Our inner personality is pervaded by Atman, infinite Bliss. Instead of experiencing peace and tranquility we are stressed out, agitated and disturbed. The Gita helps restore peace and steers us to infinite Happiness.

Dhrtarastra asks his minister Sanjaya to tell him what his sons and the sons of Pandu were doing on the battlefield of Kuruksetra. The Bhagavad Gita comes to us through the narration of Sanjaya, literally meaning one who is victorious over himself. Dhrtarastra was unable to see his own brother’s sons as his own. This sense of separateness was the cause of the entire battle. Conflict prevails in our lives when we fail to feel one with our fellow beings.

Dhrtarastra, the son of Ambika, Vicitravirya’s widow, and Vyasa, was born blind. He was blind to the evil that his sons were committing. He was attached to them and could not see right from wrong. Dhrtarastra represents the mind. The mind functions on impulse, likes and dislikes, and whims and fancies. It lacks the capacity to decipher our own long-term interests. Dhrtarastra married Gandhari who could see but chose to blind herself after her wedding. She epitomizes the intellect that judges, discriminates, discerns. However the intellect also gets blinded when infatuated with the mind. It loses its clarity. The outcome of the association of a blind mind with a blinded intellect is negativity, loss and destruction. Dhrtarastra and Gandhari had a hundred evil sons. It is the mind that takes us to self-destructive avenues. The intellect needs to be strong and alert to hold the mind in place, direct it and guide it towards our own progress and happiness. If the intellect is weak, the mind takes over and causes the downfall.

The Gita begins with the word ‘dharma’ and ends with ‘mama’. The entire Bhagavad Gita explains ‘mama dharma’ – my essential being. You are not the body, mind or intellect. You are Atman. Atman is unknown. You only know the body, mind and intellect. The Gita introduces you to your very own Self, Atman.

सञ्जय उवाच 

दृष्ट्वा तु पाण्डवानीकं व्यूढं दुर्योधनस्तदा ।

आचार्यमुपसङ्गम्य राजा वचनमब्रवीत्।।१.२।।

sañjaya uvācadṛṣṭvā tu pāṇḍavānīkaṁ
vyūḍhaṁ duryodhanas tadā
ācāryam upasaṅgamya
rājā vacanam abravīt

sañjayaḥ uvāca — Sañjaya said; dṛṣṭvā — after seeing; tu — but; pāṇḍava-anīkam — the soldiers of the Pāṇḍavas; vyūḍham — arranged in a military phalanx; duryodhanaḥ — King Duryodhana; tadā — at that time; ācāryam — the teacher; upasaṅgamya — approaching; rājā — the king; vacanam — words; abravīt — spoke.

Sañjaya said: O King, after looking over the army arranged in military formation by the sons of Pāṇḍu, King Duryodhana went to his teacher and spoke the following words.

Sanjaya begins his narrative. Duryodhana goes to Dronacarya, the son of the celebrated sage Bharadvaja, the guru of both the Pandavas and Kauravas. Dronacarya had instructed them in the art of archery, the very skill Duryodhana would use in the battle. Sanjaya highlights Duryodhana’s arrogance by saying ‘King’ Duryodhana approached the preceptor. A king speaks to his subjects but a teacher is sought by a student. When you approach a teacher it must be with humility, not arrogance. Only then is there true learning. It is this arrogance that was Duryodhana’s undoing. Had he approached Dronacarya in the right spirit he may have got valuable advice that could have prevented the death and destruction that resulted from the war.

पश्यैतां पाण्डुपुत्राणामाचार्य महतीं चमूम् |

व्यूढां द्रुपदपुत्रेण तव शिष्येण घीमता ||१.३||

paśyaitāṁ pāṇḍu-putrānām
ācārya mahatīṁ camūm
vyūḍhāṁ drupada-putreṇa
tava śiṣyeṇa dhīmatā

paśya — behold; etām — this; pāṇḍu-putrānām — of the sons of Pāṇḍu; ācārya — O teacher; mahatīm — great; camūm — military force; vyūḍhām — arranged; drupada-putreṇa — by the son of Drupada; tava — your; śiṣyeṇa— disciple; dhī-matā — very intelligent.

O my teacher, behold the great army of the sons of Pāṇḍu, so expertly arranged by your intelligent disciple the son of Drupada.

Dronacarya, the revered guru of both the Pandavas and the Kauravas was a mighty warrior. Though a Brahmana by birth and son of the famous sage Bharadvaja, he was well-versed in the science of archery. He taught the same skill to the Pandavas and Kauravas. When the war began he reluctantly went over to the Kaurava side as he was a loyal soldier of the State and felt beholden to the Kauravas. He assumed command of the Pandava forces after Bhisma was mortally wounded and lay on a bed of arrows. He fought valiantly for four successive days, killing thousands of warriors on the Pandava side. He killed Drupada, father of Draupadi and Dhrstadyumna, in the battle. He was, in turn, killed by Dhrstadyumna.

Duryodhana asks Dronacarya to see the powerful army of ‘Pandu’s sons’ led by ‘Drupada’s son’. This indicates the estrangement and distance he feels towards his own brothers and brother-in-law respectively. They were one family that was torn apart by Duryodhana’s selfishness, jealousy and bitterness. Duryodhana mockingly refers to Drupada’s son as Drona’s wise disciple. He resents the fact that Drona trained him well and is afraid of his credentials.

Duryodhana speaks of the might of the Pandava forces despite his own army being considerably larger. The Pandavas had only seven aksauhinis or battalions while the Kauravas had 11. An aksauhini consisted of 21,870 chariots, 21,870 elephants, 65,610 horses and 1,09,350 foot soldiers. The commander of each aksauhini was a maharatha, the highest title bestowed on a ksatriya warrior. Duryodhana feels insecure in spite of having the stalwarts Bhisma and Dronacarya on his side. Insecurity stems from within and is independent of the wealth or power one may have. Those who are most powerful are often insecure. A person with nothing may feel totally secure. Insecurity and fear arise from violating your conscience and the consequent guilt of having done wrong. Duryodhana has committed the most atrocious acts and has been unjust and vicious. Hence the fear.

अत्र शूरा महेष्वासा भीमार्जुनसमा युधि ।

युयुधानो विराटश्च द्रुपदश्च महारथ:||१.४||

atra śūrā maheṣv-āsā
bhīmārjuna-samā yudhi
yuyudhāno virāṭaś ca
drupadaś ca mahā-rathaḥ

 atra — here; śūrāḥ — heroes; mahā-iṣu-āsāḥ — mighty bowmen; bhīma-arjuna — to Bhīma and Arjuna; samāḥ — equal; yudhi — in the fight; yuyudhānaḥ — Yuyudhāna; virāṭaḥ — Virāṭa; ca — also; drupadaḥ — Drupada; ca — also; mahā-rathaḥ — great fighter.

Here in this army are many heroic bowmen equal in fighting to Bhīma and Arjuna: great fighters like Yuyudhāna, Virāṭa and Drupada.

There are great archers here, champions, evenly matched with Bhima and Arjuna in warfare. Yuyudhana, Virata and Drupada, the great chariot-warrior.

Duryodhana now enumerates the great warriors on the Pandava side. Bhima and Arjuna were stalwarts, the deadliest warriors known. Duryodhana says the others are equally proficient. They are:

Yuyudhana – A Yadava warrior and Krsna’s charioteer, also known as Satyaki, he was a formidable fighter.

Virata – King of the Matsyas. The Pandavas lived incognito in his kingdom in the 13th year of their exile, having assumed various disguises. Virata’s daughter Uttara married Abhimanyu, Arjuna’s son, and was Pariksita’s mother. Pariksita succedded Yudhisthira to the throne of Hastinapura. Virata and all his three sons were killed in the battle.

Drupada – King of the Pancalas and a great Maharatha. He and Drona were school friends, having learnt archery from Drona’s father, Bharadvaja. After Drupada became king Drona, who was in penury, went and asked for help. The proud monarch slighted him. For this Drona got the Pandavas to capture him but relented and gave him back half his kingdom. For revenge Drupada performed a sacrifice and a son Dhrstadhyumna and daughter Draupadi sprang from the fire. Dhrstadyumna later killed Drona and was himself killed by Asvatthama, Drona’s son.

घृष्टकेतशतुश्चेकितानः काशिराजश्च वीर्यवान् |

पुरूजित्कुन्तिभोजश्च शैब्यश्च नरपुङ्गवः ||१.५||

dhṛṣṭaketuś cekitānaḥ
kāśirājaś ca vīryavān
purujit kuntibhojaś ca
śaibyaś ca nara-puṅgavaḥ

dhṛṣṭaketuḥ — Dhṛṣṭaketu; cekitānaḥ — Cekitāna; kāśirājaḥ — Kāśirāja; ca — also; vīrya-vān — very powerful; purujit — Purujit; kuntibhojaḥ — Kuntibhoja; ca — and; śaibyaḥ — Śaibya; ca — and; nara-puṅgavaḥ — hero in human society.

There are also great heroic, powerful fighters like Dhṛṣṭaketu, Cekitāna, Kāśirāja, Purujit, Kuntibhoja and Śaibya.

Duryodhana speaks of some more Pandava warriors as ‘excellent men’. They are:

Drstaketu – King of the Cedis. He was the son of Sisupala and died at the hands of Dronacarya.

Cekitana – A Yadava prince who was Commander of a Pandava Aksauhini. Duryodhana himself killed him.

Kasiraja – King of Kasi. A valiant hero and maharatha.

Kuntibhoja – A Yadava prince and king of the Kuntis who was childless and adopted Kunti, also known as Prtha.

Purujit – Kuntibhoja’s brother.

Saibya – King of the Sibis, known for his generosity and character. His daughter Devika was married to Yudhisthira.

युधामान्युश्च विक्रान्त उत्तमौजाश्च वीर्यवान् |

सौभद्रो द्रौपदेयाश्च सर्व एव महारथाः ||१.६||

yudhāmanyuś ca vikrānta
uttamaujāś ca vīryavān
saubhadro draupadeyāś ca
sarva eva mahā-rathāḥ

yudhāmanyuḥ — Yudhāmanyu; ca — and; vikrāntaḥ — mighty; uttamaujāḥ — Uttamaujā; ca — and; vīrya-vān — very powerful; saubhadraḥ — the son of Subhadrā; draupadeyāḥ — the sons of Draupadī; ca — and; sarve — all; eva — certainly; mahā-rathāḥ — great chariot fighters.

There are the mighty Yudhāmanyu, the very powerful Uttamaujā, the son of Subhadrā and the sons of Draupadī. All these warriors are great chariot fighters.

Duryodhana wraps up his enumeration of the Pandava heroes with these names:

Yudhamanyu and Uttamauja – Royal brothers from the Pancala kingdom.

Saubhadra – Son of Subhadra, Krsna’s sister, and Arjuna. He was named Abhimanyu because he appeared heroic and fiery even at birth. During the Mahabharata war, the Kauravas decided to get into the Chakravyuha formation, knowing that the only person who could deal with it was Arjuna, who was away. The brave Abhimanyu entered the chakravyuha which he had learnt from Arjuna. He killed several warriors and was a match even for veterans like Dronacarya and Karna. However, the Pandavas did not support him and he was unable to hold out on his own against fearful odds. He was brutally killed in the end. He had two wives – Vatsala, the daughter of Balarama, and Uttara, daughter of the king of Virata. Uttara was pregnant when Abhimanyu was killed and her son Pariksita succeeded Yudhisthira to the Hastinapura throne.

Draupadeyah – Draupadi’s sons. Draupadi was the daughter of Drupada, king of the Pancalas. She was won by Arjuna at her Svayamvara ceremony. When the Pandavas returned with her and told their mother Kunti of Arjuna’s victory she told them to share the conquest among them without knowing what it was. Draupadi thus became the wife of all five brothers and had a son from each of them. They were –

Prativindhya from Yudhisthira, Srutasoma from Bhima, Srutakarma from Arjuna, Satanika from Nakula and Srutasena from Sahadeva.

Asvatthama killed them all to avenge the death of Dronacarya.

Duryodhana refers to all these warriors as great maharathas and is afraid of facing them in battle.

अस्माकं तु विशिष्टा ये तान्निबोध द्विजोत्म |

नायका मम सैन्यस्य संज्ञार्थं तान्ब्रवीमि ते ||१.७||

asmākaṁ tu viśiṣṭā ye
tān nibodha dvijottama
nāyakā mama sainyasya
saṁjñārthaṁ tān bravīmi te

asmākam — our; tu — but; viśiṣṭāḥ — especially powerful; ye — who; tān — them; nibodha — just take note of, be informed; dvija-uttama — O best of the brāhmaṇas; nāyakāḥ — captains; mama — my; sainyasya — of the soldiers; saṁjñā-artham — for information; tān — them; bravīmi — I am speaking; te — to you.

But for your information, O best of the brāhmaṇas, let me tell you about the captains who are especially qualified to lead my military force.

Duryodhana addresses Dronacarya as best among the ‘twice-born’. This term refers to Brahmanas, the highest calibre of human beings. Human beings were classified into four castes or varnas, depending on their mental composition. This depended on the proportion of sattva, rajas or tamas in them. Sattva is purity, a state of calm contemplation on the higher. Rajas is a state of mental agitation resulting in frenetic activity and tamas is ignorance leading to inertia or indolence. All human beings have all three thought patterns. The ancient masters divided humans into four categories depending on the proportion of sattva, rajas and tamas in them and gave them a vocation in accordance with their inner temperament. Brahmanas were the highest class as they were predominantly sattvika in nature. Dronacarya was a Brahmana, a thinker of high intellect. The intellect is supposed to be born at age eight when the individual begins to question, think, reflect. Hence the thread ceremony or upanayanam was conducted at this age to signify the commencement of education. Dronacarya was the best among the Brahmanas.

Duryodhana refers to the army as ‘my’ army. Both the Pandava as well as Kaurava forces were trained by Dronacarya, yet he arrogates the army to himself, a sign of vanity and false pride.

भवान्भीष्मश्च कर्णश्च कृपश्च समितिञ्जयः |

अश्वत्थामा विकर्णश्च सौमदत्तिस्तथैव च ||१.८||

bhavān bhīṣmaś ca karṇaś ca
kṛpaś ca samitiṁ-jayaḥ
aśvatthāmā vikarṇaś ca
saumadattis tathaiva ca

bhavān — your good self; bhīṣmaḥ — Grandfather Bhīṣma; ca — also; karṇaḥ — Karṇa; ca — and; kṛpaḥ — Kṛpa; ca — and; samitim-jayaḥ — always victorious in battle; aśvatthāmā — Aśvatthāmā; vikarṇaḥ — Vikarṇa; ca — as well as; saumadattiḥ — the son of Somadatta; tathā — as well as; eva — certainly; ca — also.

There are personalities like you, Bhīṣma, Karṇa, Kṛpa, Aśvatthāmā, Vikarṇa and the son of Somadatta called Bhūriśravā, who are always victorious in battle.

Duryodhana begins his narration of the Kaurava army with Dronacarya himself, a sign of the high respect and honour that was given to him. Dronacarya remains silent in the hope that Duryodhana realizes his mistake and stops the war. Silence is a powerful weapon used by mature, refined people to educate the ignorant. It is effective even with children!

Dronacarya was the son of the renowned sage Bharadvaja, a great ascetic who had mastered the Vedas. Arjuna was his favorite student. Drona was born in modern day Dehradun (a modification of dehra-dron, a clay pot).

Drona spent his youth in poverty, but studied philosophy and military arts with the then prince of Pancala, Drupada. Drupada and Drona became close friends and Drupada, on impulse, promised to give Drona half his kingdom.

Remembering the promise given by Drupada, Drona later approached him for help. However, King Drupada refused to even recognise Drona and humiliated him. Drona went away insulted, vowing revenge.

Drona went to Hastinapura, where once he saw the Kauravas and Pandavas gathered around a well. Their ball had fallen into the well and they did not know how to retrieve it. Drona retrieved the ball with his prowess.

The boys reported this incident to Bhishma, their grandfather. Bhishma instantly realized that this was Drona, and asked him to become the Guru of the Kuru princes.

On completing their training, Drona asked the princes to capture Drupada. Arjuna brought Drupada as ordered. Drona took half of Drupada’s kingdom, thus becoming his equal. He forgave Drupada for his misdeeds, but Drupada swore revenge. He performed a yajna to have a son who would slay Drona and a daughter who would marry Arjuna. His wish was fulfilled and thus was born Dhrstadyumna, the slayer of Drona, and Draupadi, the consort of the Pandavas.

Drona strongly condemned the wicked prince Duryodhana and his brothers for their abusive treatment of the Pandavas, and for usurping their kingdom and sending them into exile. But being a subject of Hastinapura, Drona was bound by duty to fight for the Kauravas, and thus against his favorite Pandavas.

Drona was an invincible warrior, whom no person on earth could defeat. After the fall of Bhisma, he became the Commander-in- Chief of the Kaurava Army.

Krsna asks Yudhisthira to proclaim that Drona’s son Asvatthama had died, so that the invincible Kuru commander would give up his arms and be killed. Bhima kills an elephant named Asvatthama, and loudly proclaims that Asvatthama is dead.

Drona knows that only Yudhisthira would tell him the truth. Yudhisthira says Asvatthama is dead, the elephant. But this last part is drowned by the sound of trumpets and conch shells. Drona is disheartened, and lays down his weapons. He is then killed by Dhrstadyumna. Drona’s death greatly saddens Arjuna, who had hoped to capture him alive.

Bhisma is one of the central characters of the Mahabharata. Bhisma was born as Devavrata and was the youngest son of Shantanu by his first wife Ganga (the holy River).

When Santanu wanted to marry a fisherwoman Satyavati, her father refused on the grounds that her children would never be rulers as Santanu already had a son Devavrata. This made Santanu despondent. To placate Satyavati’s father, Devavrata gave up his claim to the throne. At this, Satyavati’s father said his children would still have right to the throne. At this, Devavrata took the vow of celibacy. This gave him immediate recognition among the gods and his father granted him the boon of choosing the time of his death.

Bhisma was a great archer and a warrior of peerless valour and courage. In the process of finding a bride for the young king Vicitravirya (son of Santanu and Satyavati) Bhisma won the hands of princesses Amba, Ambika and Ambalika of Kasi (Varanasi) at their svayamvar. Amba confided in Bhisma that she wished to wed another man, Salwa. When Bhisma sent her back to Salwa, he turned her down. Amba was incensed at Bhisma, whose interference she perceived as the root cause of her troubles.

Amba did penance and got the boon that she would be instrumental for the death of Bhisma. Amba would be born as a princess in the house of King Drupada, and be transformed into Shikhandi, a man.

In the great battle at Kuruksetra, Bhisma, bound by his oath to serve the ruler of Hastinapura, fought reluctantly on the side of the Kauravas.

Bhisma was finally grievously wounded on the tenth day of battle by Arjuna, who hid behind Shikhandi, and rained arrows on the grandsire. Bhisma knew that Shikhandi was born a woman and refused to fight him. Bhisma fell, his entire body resting on a pincushion of Arjuna’s arrows. He lay on the ‘bed of arrows’ till the end of the battle, and chose to die only after learning that the Pandavas had won, as he was now assured that the throne of Hastinapura was in safe hands. Bhisma admitted he had been wrong in fighting for Duryodhana even though he was the king’s subject as one’s only allegiance is to righteousness.

Karna is one of the central figures in the Mahabharata. He was the first son of Kunti, half brother to the Pandavas, and the eldest of them. The princess Kunti attended to the sage Durvasa for a year while he was a guest at her father’s palace. The sage was pleased with her service and granted her a boon whereby she could call upon any god of her choice, and beget a child in his image. Kunti, while still unmarried, decided to test the boon and called upon Surya the sun god. Bound by the power of the mantra, Surya granted her a son as radiant and strong as his father. Surya gifted Karna with an armour (‘Kavaca’) and a pair of earrings (‘Kundala’) which were attached to him from birth.

Unwilling to face the world as an unwed mother, Kunti abandoned Karna, setting him afloat in a box in a river. The child was picked up by King Dhrtarastra’s charioteer, Adhiratha, a sudra. Karna was raised by him and his wife Radha.

As he grew into adulthood, Karna sought to be a warrior. He approached Dronacarya, who refused to teach him, as he was a ‘sutaputra’, the son of a charioteer. Karna approached Parasurama who accepted him as his student.

Duryodhana offered Karna the throne of Anga, today’s Bhagalpur in Bihar. Karna is spoken of as a loyal and true friend to Duryodhana. He disliked Shakuni, and advised Duryodhana to use his prowess and skill rather than deceit and trickery to defeat his enemies. When the attempt to kill the Pandavas in the house of lac fails, Karna chides Duryodhana, telling him that cowards are doomed to failure. He exhorts him to be a warrior and obtain what he wants through valour.

Karna was renowned in all the worlds for his generosity, surpassing even the gods. Following his appointment as king, he took an oath that anyone who approached him with a request at midday, would have his request fulfilled. This practice contributed to Karna’s fame as well as to his downfall, as Indra and Kunti took advantage of it.

Indra, king of the gods (Devas) and father of Arjuna, realized that Karna would be invincible in battle as long as he had the golden armour and earrings that he was born with. During the Pandavas’ exile, when war was imminent, Indra took it upon himself to weaken Karna. He approached Karna as a poor Brahmana. Karna’s father, Surya, told Karna in a dream that Indra would disguise himself as a beggar and ask for his armour and earrings as alms. Surya exhorted him not to give away his protection. Karna, who did not know that Surya was his father, ignored the warning. As Surya had predicted, a disguised Indra approached Karna and asked for his kavaca (armour) and kundala (earrings) as alms. Karna, despite knowing that the armour and earrings were his protection, readily gave them away. Indra, struck by Karna’s gesture, reciprocated by giving Karna the boon to use his most powerful weapon, the Vasavi shakti, but only once.

Kunti approached Karna and revealed her identity as his mother. The two share a touching moment together, when she tells him to throw aside the name ‘Radheya’ and call himself ‘Kaunteya’ instead. Karna tells Kunti that had she been willing to call him Kaunteya many years ago, when he appeared at the tournament, things might have been different, but now it was too late. He owes Duryodhana too much, is Duryodhana’s friend first and foremost, and must fight the Pandavas. However, he promises that he will not kill any of the five, save Arjuna. He and Arjuna have sworn to kill each other, and one of them must die.

Karna requests his mother to keep their relationship and his royal birth a secret until his death. Only then can she reveal to the world that he was actually her first born.

On the seventeenth day of battle, the much anticipated confrontation between Karna and Arjuna finally takes place. During the course of combat, one of Karna’s chariot wheels gets stuck in loose soil. King Salya, who was his charioteer, refuses to get down and remove the wheel from the mud. Hence Karna asks Arjuna to wait while he gets off his chariot and extricates the wheel. Arjuna agrees. Meanwhile Krsna orders Arjuna to shoot Karna while he was attempting to lift the wheel out of the mud.

After Karna’s death, Kunti informs the Pandavas that she was Karna’s mother and that he was the eldest of the Pandavas. The Pandavas grieve for Karna. Yudhisthira, particularly, was incensed on hearing that his mother had kept Karna’s identity a secret from him and his brothers. He curses all women, stating that henceforth they would never be able to keep a secret.

The city of Karnal in Haryana, near Kuruksetra, is named after Karna. Karna serves as an excellent example of a gifted, righteous and brave individual who was still doomed because of his loyalty towards the evil Duryodhana.

Kripacarya, also often called Kripa, was the chief priest at the court of Hastinapura, in the Mahabharata. His twin sister Kripi married Drona, the weapons master to the court. He was appointed as preceptor of Pariksita, the grandson of Arjuna.

Asvatthama was the son of guru Dronacarya. Dronacarya loved him dearly. Asvatthama obtained permission from the dying Duryodhana to brutally murder Dhristadhyumna after the war had officially ended.

VIKARNA, the son of Dhritarastra was best among the Kauravas. He alone raised a voice in favour of Draupadi while she was being derobed in open Parliament. Even Bhisma and Vidura did not support Draupadi. During the war Bhima killed Vikarna after a brave fight.

Bhurisravas and Somadatta were two among the eleven generals of the Kaurava army, leading an Aksauhini of troops.