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Drone was the son of Maharshi Bharadwaaj. He was born from a water pot that is why he is called as "Kumbhaj" (pot-born). After studying four Ved and Vedaang, he devoted his life to archery and became a very good archer. He was married to Kripee, sister of Kripaachaarya and the daughter of Maharshi Shardwaan and the Apsaraa Urvashee. After giving birth to them, Kripaa and Kripee,  Urvashee left both children in a forest. Raajaa Shaantanu found them lying there and brought them home and gave them to his Kul Guru to bring them up. Then Kripee was married to Drone and Kripaa was appointed their Kul Guru. Drone had a son named Ashwatthaamaa. He was Amar (immortal).

Drone and Drupad
He had a great enmity with Drupad. They got educated together from one Guru. There Drupad once said to Drone that "we are friends and whatever I have, its half is yours." Drone didn't say anything at that time but kept his words in his mind. They grew up, finished their education and went to their respective homes, got married, had children etc. As Drupad was the Prince, he became the King of Paanchaal Desh. Drone was the son of a Braahman so he started looking for the job to teach pupils.

Once Kripee didn't have milk for her son Ashwatthaamaa, so she was giving him the solution of flour and water saying that it was milk and the child was saying that it was not milk. Drone came from outside and saw this. He felt very bad that he couldn't even arrange some milk for his child. He said to Kripee - "I am going to bring a cow for my son and when I will get it. then only I will return home." Kripee tried to stop him but he didn't stop and went away.

As Drone couldn't find anything for living. So first he thought to go to Parashuraam Jee. At that time he was retiring from his kingly life so he was distributing his wealth and Prithvi. But Drone found that he was very late for it because Parashuraam had already distributed his riches, donated Prithvi to Kashyap Jee and was ready to go to forest. But Parashuraam didn't consider proper to return him empty-handed, so he said - "I don't have any money or anything else as I have donated everything, but still I have my weapons with me. If you want to learn some weaponry and warfare, I can teach you some tips." Drone got ready, so he taught him the use of some weapons and other warfare tricks. Soon Drone became the unrivaled master of military arts.

Then he remembered Drupad so he went to Drupad and reminded his statement "Whatever I have, its half is yours" and asked for a cow from his share. Drupad laughed and said - "It was the childhood talks. I am a King. We cannot be equal. How is it possible that what I have its half is yours?" Drone got very angry at this. He behaved politely for some time but then left the place carrying the feeling of revenge. Later he went to Hastinaapur with the hope to get some work and stayed there with his brother-in-law Kripaachaarya.

Drone is Appointed as the Guru of Kaurav and Paandav
Once Kaurav and Paandav etc were playing ball in a jungle. Their ball fell in a dry well. Yudhishthir tried to take it out but could not take it out. In this process his ring also fell in the well. They could not take it out in spite of several efforts and they did not know what to do. So they were just wandering around the well, that Drone happened to be there. He asked, "What has happened that makes you sad." They told that their ball had fallen in the well, and they were unable to take it out. Drone said, "OK let me take it out for you."

Yudhishthir said laughing - "If you will take out our ball then we will make sure that you get a hearty meal in Kripaachaarya's house." So first Drone threw a blade of grass uttering some words. It went like an arrow at the ball, then he sent the next, and the next, and the next; thus making a chain to get stuck in the back of the previous blade of grass, until they made a long stick. Then he pulled the ball out by holding the long stick made of arrows. Children were very amazed to see it.

Then they requested him to take out Yudhishthir's ring also. Drone borrowed a bow and set an arrow on the string and shot it right into the ring, it rebounded and brought the ring out of the well. All got very obliged to him and said - "Who are you and what can we do for you?" He said - "Go to Bheeshm and ask him who am I." 

When they came home Arjun told this incident to Bheeshm. Bheeshm understood that Drone is in the town. He regarded Drone very highly. Once he expressed that if his childhood were back, he would learn some weapons from Drone. So he then invited Drone and appointed him as the teacher of Kaurav and Paandav to teach them various weapons. Drone taught archery and other weapons to them. His most favorite student was Arjun. To see him best in archery, he asked the thumb of right hand of Eklavya in Guru Dakshinaa. And he did not allow Karn to display his skills in archery with Kaurav and Paandav.

Guru Dakshinaa From Eklavya
Once Drone was teaching archery by killing an animal, that an arrow came from somewhere and killed that animal. Guru Jee got surprised to see that arrow and looked for the person who shot that arrow. They found a boy practicing archery. On asking his introduction, he told his own name as Eklavya and his Guru's name as Dronaachaarya. Drone was surprised to hear that Drone was his Guru, because he had never seen him, and he had never trained him. Then he showed the statue of Drone and said - "I have been learning all this from your statue, and whenever I get opportunity I watch you teaching these princes."

Drone saw a brilliant archer in him. He never wanted anybody competitive of Arjun, so he thought something and said - "If you have learned archery from me then you have to give Guru Dakshinaa to me?" Bowing his head to Guru Jee, he said - "Ask me, what can I give to you?" Drone cunningly asked for his right hand thumb. Eklavya immediately cut it with a sword and offered it to Guru Jee. Even today that tribe does not use right thumb while using bow and arrow.

Guru Dakshinaa From Kaurav and Paandav
When the education of Paandav and Kaurav came to the end and they were ready to go home, the time came to give Guru Dakshinaa to Guru Jee. Drone asked them to bring Drupad tied with rope. He first asked Duryodhan (Kaurav) to do that. Duryodhan went with his army. Drupad thought that Hastinaapur had attacked the kingdom so he fought and defeated Duryodhan. Duryodhan came back defeated without bringing Drupad. On the contrary Paandav went alone and brought Drupad tied with rope after defeating him.

Now Drone said - "Raajan, Do not fear for your life. Now I am the King of your kingdom, but still I want to maintain our promise made in childhood. I give you half of this kingdom, since now it is mine, by defeating you. You did not keep your promise of your childhood, but I will keep your promise, so that kingdom is half yours and half mine. Now from my share I take only one cow and give everything back to you. I free you too." Thus Drone took one cow and freed Drupad. Drone came home with the cow and his son Ashwatthaamaa. Kripee got ery happy to see both of them. Drone said - "I couldn't have come here unless I got the cow and I couldn't get the cow so I could not come home. As soon as I got the cow, I came back home."

Drone in MBH War
Drone was the Chief Commander of the Kaurav army for full 5 days after the fall of Bheeshm. During those days he really troubled Paandav so much that they had to plan for his death. Krishn suggested that once He heard Drone saying that "if I heard in the battlefield that my son is dead, I will just die." So if somebody can convince him that Ashwatthaamaa had died, he would die. Bheem took the responsibility to announce and Yudhishthir was forced to confirm this statement. After hearing hearing from Yudhishthir the news of Ashwatthaamaa's death he kept his weapons and just sat down and left his mortal body by Yog. At that time only Dhrishtdyumn shot his arrows at him. That is how Drone was killed. MBH says that by that time Drone had already left his mortal body.

He was the one who organized his army in Chakra Vyooh, removed Arjun from the battlefield, and expected Yudhishthir to break into it; but unfortunately Abhimanyu came there and got killed.



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Created by Sushma Gupta on January 15, 2002
Modified on 08/13/13