Chapter 72: Hurrah! I have won - Shakuni

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.