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All the five Pandavas loved Draupadi equally. So there are chances for experiencing jealous and disrupt among brothers. Inorder to avoid it, Krishna told the Pandavas about the story of Tilotamma, an Apsara who was sent by the Devas to disrupt the unity of two demon brothers, Sunda and Upasunda. When they saw Tilotamma, both of the demons fell in love with her instantly. They expressed their desire to marry her. But she said that she will marry one, who is stronger among the two. The brothers decided to fight for her, which resulted in killing each other.

So in order to avoid experiencing disrupt among brothers, Krishna forwarded a suggestion. At any time, Draupadi to be exclusive to one brother for a year and the others should stay away from the couple’s apartment. Once the year is over, she must be move towards other brother. The brother who enters Draupadi’s apartment out of turn should observe celibacy and depart from the kingdom for twelve years, said Krishna to the Pandavas. The Pandavas agreed. Each brother had restricted entry to Draupadi’s chamber for an interval of four years at a time. Draupadi served each of them dutifully for the respected period. Before moving from one husband to another, Draupadi would walk through the fire and regain her virginity. Since, she got the boon from shiva for regaining her virginity throughout the life. Seeing his cousins well settled, Krishna returned to his capital, Dwaraka.

Draupadi enjoyed honest in Yudhistira, physical power in Bhima, skill in Arjuna, beauty in Nakula and knowledge in Sahadeva. She bore a son to each of the five brothers, in intervals of one year. Thus she became mother of five sons. The Pandavas were also permitted to marry other women in order to avoid their loneliness between each four years in the absence of Draupadi. But Draupadi not allowed their other wives to stay in Indraprastha and it was the only condition she forwarded and Pandavas agreed to it.

One day, the cows of the Pandavas were robbed by a group of thieves. The cowherds wailed to Arjuna that their cows had been robbed and that the robbers were fleeing. They appealed to Arjuna to chase them. Arjuna rushed to the palace to collect his bow, but he could not find it. Then he remembered that Pandava arms were stored in Yudhishthira’s apartment. When he entered, he found Draupadi in the arms of Yudhishtira in bedchamber. Arjuna then picked his bow, chased the robbers and brought the cows back. Returning to the palace, Arjuna was punished for exile of twelve years as he broken the code of not entering the bedchamber out of turn. He then decided to go on a pilgrimage.
Khandava-prastha was a huge forest full of birds and beasts. It was abode of the Nagas as well as the Demons. Krishna advised Pandavas to burn Khandava-prastha. Yudhishtira wondered on why Krishna said to burn the forest, since the forest was abode to several creatures and burning will result in the massacre of those creatures. But Krishna convinced Yudhishtira that, one can’t establish a farmland or a garden or a city without destroying a forest. Agni, the fire-god suddenly appeared before them and said that the ghee poured on him during 12 years yagna by a king called Swetaki made him sick and pale. So burning something raw will restore his luster and he inquired Yudhishtira that should he want any support from his side. Agni’s timely arrival gave the Pandavas a reason to set Khandava-prastha on fire. Agni then started to burn all living creatures including trees, herbs, shrubs and even grasses.

When the birds and the beasts cried out and tried to escape, Krishna shouted Agni to kill all those trying to escape. Arjuna inquired the reason for killing; Krishna then said that if anybody left from this forest, then they will return to claim the land. So you should know the price of ownership. Arjuna then said that when should to stop this massacre. Krishna replied that you should stop this when your needs are met and before you fall prey to greed. Also he said that knowing when to stop the massacre is the hallmark of an excellent king. Arjuna who didn’t grasped the full meaning of Krishna’s reply, followed Krishna and started to kill the creatures using the arrows who are trying to escape from the fire including deer, lion, tiger, monkeys, serpents, birds, bees and even ants. They also killed the resident Nagas and the demons. The Nagas asked for help to their friend, Indra who launched the thunder and made the clouds to shed rain. Krishna saw the rain fall and advised Arjuna to generate a great umbrella of arrows above the forest such that not a drop of rain touches the ground. Thus, under the umbrella of arrows, the forest continued to burn.

Strangely, the destruction of the Khandava forest harbored the enemies of god. The forest was colonized by creatures hostile to god. Takshaka, the serpent king was escaped since being away at Kurukshetra. Takshaka’s son Aswasena was caught in the fire along with his mother. Aswasena escaped by tricking against Arjuna with Indra’s help, but his mother was killed by Arjuna’s arrows. Krishna and Agni cursed Aswasena for not becoming famous due his escape. Besides Aswasena, only five other lives were spared. They are Maya and four birds called Sarangakas. Maya (a danava demon) who begged for mercy was spared by Krishna, since he had given a promise to pandavas for helping them to build a palace as he was an architect of the demons. The four birds, Sarangakas life was spared by Agni since their father, sage Mandapala appealed him to spare them. The fire raged for fifteen days and finally Agni restored his luster. In gratitude, he gave Arjuna a powerful bow called Gandiva and Krishna a discus called Sudarshan. Then Agni said to both of them to use these weapons only for maintaining dharma on earth. Agni then returned to his celestial abode.

Krishna then invited Lord Vishwakarma, the majestic architect to design the city just the way he had made Dwarka or perhaps better than that. He transformed the desert into a paradise on earth. He built a palace for pandavas in the city. Numerous trees were later planted and many lakes were dug by the Pandavas. Priests, warriors, farmers, traders and artisans from different parts of the Bharata-varsha came for settling there. The new city was named as Indraprastha, means a paradise on earth. It later became a prosperous city with farmlands, gardens, orchards and markets. Yudhishtira along with his brothers spread the ideas of dharma in this city. In Indraprastha, Yudhishtira endorsed everybody to perform each one’s dharma by doing their role in the society. In a family, women should take the responsibility of taking care to their fathers, brothers, husbands and sons.
After seeing Krishna, Kunti hugged and wept. Then she shared her waves of memories from her childhood as Yadava to the incidents that led the Pandavas to wander in the forest to the Krishna. Krishna calmed his aunt and said that she faced her destiny fearlessly and triumphed over it with her right decisions. Kunti now calmed by the soft, comforting voice of Krishna. Krishna then said to Kunti that to inform Dhritarashtra that Pandavas are alive and then to return the kingdom. He then assured kunti that now with the support of mighty Drupada; Kauravas will dare not to harm her sons. Later Drupada came to know that it was Arjuna who married her daughter. He became happy but was shocked to hear that Draupadi shared the Pandavas. But upon Vyasa’s advice and his revelation of Draupadi’s previous birth and her boon from Shiva satisfied him. He celebrated his daughter’s wedding with the Pandava brothers and escorted the wedding party to his palace.

It was Vidura, who met the Dhritarashtra and informed him that Pandavas were alive and it was they who were successful in the Swayamvara of Drupada’s daughter. As soon as Vidura left, Dhritarashtra sent for Duryodhana and Karna. Then he informed Duryodhana that Pandavas are alive and no doubt they are coming back to claim the kingdom. Duryodhana strongly represented to her father that to break their unity through secret plans, but Karna argued Duryodhana for the forceful elimination of Pandavas by attacking face to face. Bhishma and Drona declared that their love for the Pandavas was no less than their love for Kauravas. They discouraged the king from any thought of attacking the Pandavas and ridiculed the ‘low born’ Karna’s destructive opinion to the king. Vidura endorsed the Bhishma and Drona’s views. Dhritarashtra had to bow his superior counsel. Then he sent Vidura to Panchala to bring Kunti and pandavas back to Hastinapura. The whole city rejoiced when they realized that Kunti and her sons survived from the terrible fire.

Pandavas now returned to Hastinapura more powerful than ever with the support of Drupada. Dhritarashtra, Gandhari, Bhishma, Drona, Vidura and the Kauravas welcomed them with great care and affection. On looking their love towards them, Pandavas kept wondered who among them had hatched the plan to kill them. Vidura later advised Dhritarashtra to renounce the throne and pass it on to Yudhishtira, who was the eldest grandson of Vichitravirya. Dhritarashtra, however, was unwilling. He said he can’t since his sons never serve Pandavas. Dhritarashtra preferred Duryodhana to become the king, for the sake of peace. Vidura knew that Pandavas would never agree this and upon Krishna’s suggestion Vidura came to the conclusion that only way to bring peace in the kingdom was to divide the kuru lands. Bhishma protested at first but surrendered later realizing that there was no other way out.

In a public ceremony, Dhritarashtra proposed the division of Kuru lands. He gave the Pandavas the half of the kingdom, which is the forest of Khandava-prastha. He then said to make a palace there and then to establish a kingdom. The region allotted for pandavas was wild, partially desert and partially forest. But the Pandavas without any refusal or making any arguments accepted the proposal and instantly shifted to their new habitation.
After killing Kamsa, Krishna was hailed as the liberator of the Yadavas. Everybody in the city of Mathura then realized the fact that both Krishna and Balarama was the son of Vasudeva and Devaki. Thus they recognized both as a Kshatriya, a descendant of Yadu. Both of them then entered the gurukula and educated under sage Sandipani. Krishna became the prince in the court of Yadu and became a member of the ruling Yadava council in Mathura which is re-established after Kamsa’s death. But not every member in the Yadava council accepted Krishna as a true Yadava.
Prasenajit, who was one of the members of Yadava council, was killed while hunting in the forest. His jewel called Syamantaka was also stolen by someone else. Some jealous members accused that Krishna stole that jewel. Krishna somehow managed to prove that Prasenajit was killed by a lion and the jewel called Syamantaka been stolen by a bear. As a compensation for accusing Krishna as robber, Prasenajit’s brother, Surajit decided to give his daughter, Satyabhama to Krishna. Thus Krishna married Satyabhama and this marriage strengthened Krishna’s position in the Yadava council in Mathura.

Jarasandha, the king of Magadha was not happy with Krishna’s membership in Yadava council. He was angry that rather than punishing the cowherd for killing his son-in-law, Kamsa, the Yadavas had given him the membership. Jarasandha then ordered his soldiers to attack Mathura and seize the Yadavas properties. His army attacked Mathura for seventeen times, but Krishna and Balarama defended the Jarasandha’s forces and led the Yadavas to victory. But for the eighteenth time, Jarasandha’s forces led by one of his powerful allies, Kalyavan destroyed the city of Mathura. The Krishna and the Yadavas then took a safe decision of withdrawal from the city in order to avoid much loses for them. They migrated towards west across the desert and mountains. They then finally reached the island of Dwaraka near the sea.

Dwaraka was earlier ruled by a king called Kakudmi. Long ago, he along with his daughter, Revati had gone to the abode of Brahma for seeking him about a suitable groom for his daughter. Unfortunately, 27 catur-yugas passed after meeting with Brahma, since a brahma day is equal 1000 mahayugas. When he returned to earth with his daughter, he found that all his relatives and natives were passed away. They also found that the nature and surroundings were changed as several generations passed. They now landed in Dwapara Yuga after passing 27 catur-yugas. Now the human beings had shrunk in size (as the size of human reduces when passing from one Yuga to other) and no man was ready to marry his giant daughter. During his visit, Brahma informed Kakudmi that Vishnu was incarnate on earth in the forms of Krishna and Balarama and Balarama should be a worthy groom for his daughter. Kakudmi then waited Balarama to arrive at Dwaraka. Thus the destiny made Krishna and Balarama to arrive at Dwaraka. Balarama, who now arrived at Dwaraka, tapped his plough on Revati’s head and she shrunk to the normal height of people in this Yuga. Impressed with Balarama, Kakudmi proposed him to marry his daughter. Balarama agreed and in gratitude, Kakudmi permitted the Yadavas to settle on his island.

To secure this place for Yadavas, Krishna married several women from neighboring kingdoms. Rukmini was one among them. She was the princess of Vidarbha. Krishna married Rukmini to save her from forceful marriage to Shishupala by her brother, Rukmi. Shishupala was the king of Chedi. Krishna abducted Rukmini and put her into his chariot with him, whiles Shishupala and his army noticing it. They tried to chase Krishna, but failed. Shishupala happened to be an ally of Jarasandha, informed him that Krishna is now settled in the island of Dwaraka along with Yadavas. Jarasandha could do nothing but fume in frustration. Inorder to make political alliances with several kingdoms, Krishna married many more princesses from Avanti, Kosala, Madra and Kekaya. It was during one such visit, Krishna met Pandavas for the first time at the court of Drupada.

Krishna enjoyed the company of gopis and gopas and they also liked him the most. Every night, he brings the villagers to a forest called Madhuvan, which is full of perfumed flowers. Then he entertains them by playing his flute. All the milkmaids present there would dance to the tunes of Krishna. Krishna also dances along with them. The villagers do not have any fear of darkness or creatures once they got the presence of Krishna. They felt secure in the company of Krishna. But it does not longs lasted, as Kamsa sent a chariot to Vrindavan ordering Krishna to come to Mathura and take part in a wrestling competition. His foster father, Nanda had no choice but to let Krishna go. Balarama, who was font of his brother, accompanied him. The gopis and gopas of Vrindavan hit their chests in sorrow. They wept and followed the path of the chariot until it disappeared from their eyes.

Kamsa was delirious with fear waiting for Krishna to arrive and he was not capable to sleep that night because of bad dreams. He saw the reflection of headless body in the mirror, everything appeared double in his eyes, and even saw the layer of the sky as sliced. He saw holes in his shadow and seemed no footprints when he walked. Next day, Krishna and Balarama entered the grandeur city of Mathura with their friends. Both of them won the hearts of the Yadavas. Every Yadavas cheered for the two cowherds. By and by they came to the wrestling ring and accepted the challenge to fight Kamsa's demons. Fearlessly, Krishna and Balarama killed Kamsa’s demons one by one including the champions. Krishna defeated Chanura, whereas Balarama defeated Mushtika. Everyone except Kamsa cheered at the amazing defeat of demons.

The evil king stopped the cheer of audience and shouted to his soldiers to exile the two sons of Vasudeva out of the city. Then to seize the cowherds' property and to arrest their guardian Nanda, after that to kill the Vasudeva and those who cheered along with his own father, Ugrasena who sided his enemies. In response, Krishna jumped into the stands of Kamsa and knocked off his crown. Krishna then dragged Kamsa to the wrestling mat by his hair. Then he easily killed Kamsa, striking him with his fist. Suddenly Kamsa's eight younger brothers headed by Kanka and Nyagrodha rushed towards Krishna, but Balarama stopped them and he killed those eight brothers. Krishna and Balarama then met their parents, Devaki and Vasudeva in Prison. But they went struck on seeing their sons and became afraid for embracing their sons as they knew that they were god himself reborn in earth for the fulfillment of prophecy. Thus both their sons liberated their parents from prison, and reinstated Ugrasen as the King of Mathura.


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