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Duryodhana jumped up in joy and commanded Vidura to fetch Draupadi. “The Pandavas are all my slaves,” he said. “And so is Draupadi. Her quarters from now should be with the servants and not where the queens and princesses live.” Vidura stood up and angrily rebuked Duryodhana for the insults he was heaping on the Pandava brothers and their faultless wife. “The consequences are going to be serious and the destruction of the Kurus is sure to follow,” he warned.

“Fie unto you Kshatta,” cried Duryodhana, intoxicated with Shakuni’s success. He called a Pratikamin (attendant) standing nearby. He commanded the servant to seek Draupadi and fetch her to the hall. The Pratikamin went to where the royal ladies were resting and told Draupadi that her lord had lost everything in the gamble, including his queen. At his master’s command, the Pratikamin continued, he had come to take her to the gambling hall. A shocked and distraught Draupadi sent back the attendant saying, “Go find out first whether my lord lost me before he lost himself or after.”

The Paratikamin returned to the hall and repeated Draupadi’s words to those present. He looked at Yudhisthira for an answer. Yudhisthira sat grimly, without uttering a word. Nor did any of the elders speak. It was Duryodhana who burst out. “Let the Panchali princess come hither and put the question to her husband so that the entire assembly can hear the answer. Go and fetch her hither.” he commanded the attendant.

Yudhisthira managed to send a message secretly to Draupadi, asking her to come, scantily dressed though she was due to her season, and appeal to the king. Meanwhile, the impatient Duryodhana howled once again at the attendant to carry out his command. The Pratikamin stood terrified at the prospect of having to face Draupadi again. “What should I tell her?” he stuttered.

 “This fool is possessed of fear,” Duryodhana shouted to his brother Dushasana. “You go and fetch her, if necessary by force.” Dushasana, with his eyes red, went to where Draupadi was. On seeing him Draupadi tried to run to the interior, but the evil brother of Duryodhana chased her and caught her. Disregarding her protests and pleas he dragged her by her tresses to the assembly. The Panchali princess looked up and prayed, “Krishna, thou very incarnation of the supreme god Narayana, I look to thee alone to protect me.”

Even by that time, Yudhisthira became a slave to dice game. He stops thinking about good and bad. He put his complete kingdom as a bet and lost it. After the eleventh game, with all his assets gone, Yudhishtira did the ridiculous. He began wagering his own brothers, one by one. First the handsome Nakula, second the intellectual Sahadeva, then the archer Arjuna and finally the physically powerful Bhima. He lost all of them. He stakes himself in the game and lost. Still he refused to quit the gambling. Finally he staked the pandavas’s wife, Draupadi. Everyone in the gambling hall gasped. Duryodhana grinned and accepted the wager. Shakuni rolled the dice for the seventeenth time and said, ‘Hurrah! I have won’. Bhishma, Drona and Vidura who were watching these rapid progression, stayed speechless. Dushasana, Karna and Jayadratha were in thrilled and in mood.

Vidura approached Duryodhana to call off the game in order to avoid rivalry between Pandavas and Kauravas. Duryodhana flashed like a hooded snake and replied Vidura that he had no voice as he was eating and drinking with kauravas money. Duryodhana added that Vidura is only a son to menial and have no status to advise him. Vidura became speechless on Duryodhana’s words and had been insulted for favoring Pandavas to avoid the rivalry. Duryodhana then warned Vidura to accept the game going on here, otherwise to walk out from the palace for his loyalty towards Pandavas.

Ignoring Duryodhana’s warning, Vidura contacted Dhritarashtra once again to stop the evil activities happening in the gambling hall. Vidura added that Duryodhana is now blinded by rage and always heeds to the wicked ideas of wicked people. It’s good to remember how the Andhakas, Yadavas and Bhojas united to put an end to Kamsa. Vidura then said to Dhritarashtra that it is his duty to tell the truth of future events forcibly. At last Vidura said once more that enmity with Pandavas is not good for Kauravas. So saying, Vidura sat down. Dhritarashtra was unmoved and remained silent on Vidura’s words.

At Hastinapura, Dhritarashtra along with his sons received Yudhisthira and his brothers. Pandavas along with their wife, Draupadi sought the blessings of Dhritarashtra and Gandhari. They were then shown to their wonderful apartment, and the night was spent in happiness and delight. The next morning all the guests assembled visited the big auditorium in Hastinapura. After that they were happily seated in that big auditorium constructed exclusively for playing dices game. Without wasting time, Shakuni stood up and invited Yudhisthira for the dice game. Yudhisthira said to Shakuni that dishonest gambling is opposite to the rules of Kshatriyas. He added that Wealth must be obtained from winning the battle and wealth so obtained should be distributed to the Brahmins. However, having invited by Dhritarashtra, we should play and leaving the result of game to fate. Bhishma, Vidura, Kripacharya and Drona were observing the game with broken hearts in order to keep peace between the two groups.

Duryodhana, instead of himself playing, chose Shakuni to take part in game on his behalf, opposing to the reputable practice. Here again Yudhisthira agreed and the game started. Yudhisthira put his diamond bracelets as his first bet. Shakuni threw the dice. The dice rolled and Shakuni called it right. “Hurrah! I have won”. Yudhisthira next put his royal car for game. The dice rolled and Shakuni won for second time also. Then the pandava king put a hundred thousand girls and a thousand soldiers for the stake. The result was the same and Shakuni won the game for third time. Yudhisthira then put his Elephants, horses, steeds, chariots and draught animals for consecutive times in the dice game. Shakuni was winning each and every game.

Some kind of greediness developed in Yudhisthira. One by one he was gambling and losing. The entire golden assets, diamond assets, valuable stones, metal assets, servants, cows and complete army, everything he betted and lost. Vidura, Bhishma and other elders became restless, sat with their heads hanging, unable to intervene. Vidura met Dhritarashtra and said the king to call off the game and save the Kuru race from the sins they are committing. He added that Duryodhana is a wicked personality and his acts will cause the destruction of entire kuru race. Vidura warned Dhritarashtra that if this gambling continued, then it will raise enmity between two groups and results in a great war between Pandavas and Kauravas. Due to the undue love towards his sons, Dhritarashtra remained silent.


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