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5-Udyog Parv
Kathaa-G - 5 Pre-War - page 21

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Udyog Parv

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Bheeshm - the Commander of Kaurav Army

Janmejaya asked - "After hearing that Paandav have assembled in Kurukshetra what Duryodhan did? I wish to hear it in detail. Vaishampaayan said - As soon as Krishn left the court, Duryodhan said to Karn, Shakuni, and Dushaasan - "Krishn has gone without achieving His objective. He will certainly instigate Paandav for war, and this battle will be a fierce one. So you be active and be prepared for war with everything. Hundreds and thousands of tents should be pitched, Road from the city to camp should be leveled. We will march tomorrow." The next morning Kaurav army also arrived in Kurukshetra.

Yudhishthir remembering the words of Krishn again asked Krishn - "What we should do in this situation?" Krishn said in His deep voice - "Duryodhan doesn't want to listen to anybody. Equally foolish are Karn, Shakuni and Dushaasan. We do not want to make peace at the cost of our property, so there is no alternative except war." So Yudhishthir ordered his brothers to prepare for war. But then he himself got sad thinking about the slaughter of those who were very superiors to him. He said to this to Bheem and Arjun. They reminded him the words of Kuntee and Vidur who could not say any thing sinful and said - "We cannot withdraw from battle." Thus they made up their minds and passed the night in great happiness.

After the night passed, Duryodhan distributed his army in three divisions - superiors, middle and inferiors keeping them in front, center and at rear. He had also provided them lots of equipments and accessories to sustain battle. A large body of troops were kept in reserve. This reserve consisted chariots, each attached with 50 elephants, each elephant attached with 100 horses, and each horse was attached to seven foot soldiers. 500 chariots, as many elephants, 1,500 elephants, 2,500 foot soldiers constituted a Senaa (army). Ten such Senaa constituted a Preetan, and ten such Preetan constituted a Vaahinee. But commonly Senaa, Vaahinee, Preetan, Dhwajinee, Chamu, Akshauhinee and Varuthinee all are used in the same sense.

With this number Kaurav arranged their force - between the two sides they had 18 Akshauhinee army. Paandav had seven Akshauhinee and Kaurav had 11 Akshauhinee. 250 men constitute a Pattee, and three Pattee make a Senaamukh or Gulm, and three Gulm make a Gan. Duryodhan had 1,100 such Gun. He placed one Akshauhinee under each Kripaa, Drone, Shalya, Jayadrath, Sudakshinaa (the king of Kaamboj), Kritvarmaa, Ashwatthaamaa, Karn, Bhoorishravaa, Shakuni, and Baahleek leaders.

Duryodhan approached Bheeshm along with all the kings, saluted him, and said with his palms folding - "Without a good leader the whole army is like a swarm of ants. We have heard that in olden times once Kshatriya of Haihaya Vansh (family) defeated the other three Varn on the other side. When Braahman asked them the reason of this some truth speaker Kshatriya said - "In battle we obey the orders of one intelligent person only." Then Braahman chose an intelligent leader from among themselves and then fought with Kshatriya and defeated them. So please be our leader and we will follow you."

Bheeshm looked at him and said - "I love Paandav as I love you. Therefore I will have to see their good also. Although I will fight for you as I have given you my word and I know that there is no other warrior on Earth equal to me except Arjun. Arjun is capable of handling many kinds of celestial weapons. He will never fight with me openly. With the power of my weapons, I can destroy the Universe in three times, but I cannot kill Paandav. Therefore I will kill 10,000 warriors everyday. If they will not be able to kill me first, then I will continue to do so. There is another thing I should tell you, that either Karn will fight first or me. He always boasts and compares himself with me." Karn said - "I will never fight till Bheeshm is alive, I will fight Arjun when Bheeshm dies."

Then Duryodhan installed Bheeshm as the Commander-in-Chief of his army. Many conchs blew at that time. Many bad omens also occurred at that time. Duryodhan along withb his brother and Bheeshm came to Kurukshetra. His tent was pitched which looked Hastinaapur itself.


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Created by Sushma Gupta On 03/09/02
Modified on 11/30/12