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see also  Drupad

He was married to Kripee, sister of Kripaachaarya and the daughter of Maharshi Shardwaan and  Janapadee Apsaraa. After giving birth to two children, one boy and one girl, Janapadee left both children in a forest and went to Swarg. Raajaa Shaantanu saw them lying there, brought them home and brought up. He named them Kripaa and Kripee. Then Kripee was married to Drone. They had a son named Ashwatthaamaa. He was Amar (immortal).

Enmity with 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 it in his mind. They grew up, went to their respective homes, got married, had children etc. Drupad was the Prince, he became the King of Paanchaal Desh. Drone was a Braahman, he couldn't find anything for living.

Once Kripee didn't have milk for the child, so she was giving him the solution of flour and water saying him 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 child 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.

He remembered Drupad so he went to Drupad and reminded his statement "Whatever I have, its half is yours" and asked just for a cow from his share. Drupad laughed and said - "It was the childhood talks, now I am a king. We are not equal, nor we can be. 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. Then he wandered around in search of work, but didn't go home.

Appointed as Guru of Kaurav and Paandav
Once Kaurav and Paandav were playing ball in the jungle. Their ball fell in a dry well. They could not take it out in spite of several efforts and they did not know what to do. So they were just thinking as what to do, that Drone happened to be there. He asked, "What has happened that makes you sad."  They told hm that their ball had fallen in the well, and they are unable to take it out. Drone said, "OK, let me take it out for you." So first he shot one arrow at the ball, then the next so that it got stuck in the back of the first arrow, then next, and then next, until those arrows made a long stick and its other end came up. Then he pulled the ball out by holding the long stick made of arrows. Children were very happy. 

When they came home Arjun told this incident to Bheeshm. Bheeshm understood that Drone was in the town. He regarded Drone very highly. Once he expressed that if his childhood were back then 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. Thus 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.

Incident of Eklavya
Once Drone took Kaurav and Paandav for a picnic in a forest. They had a dog also with them. While the children were playing, the dog went around. After a while he returned with his mouth full of arrows. Everybody was surprised to see this, especially Arjun. They went around to look for the person who did this to their dog. They found a boy practicing archery. On asking his introduction, he told his name as Eklavya and his Guru's name Dronaachaarya. Drone was surprised to hear that Done was his Guru, because 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 have got 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. Everybody got stunned on asking such Guru Dakshinaa. Eklavya immediately cut his right thumb and offered it to Guru Jee. [Even today that tribe does not use right thumb while using their bow and arrow.]

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

Now Drone said - "Since you are defeated, I am the King of that kingdom. You did not keep your promise, but I will keep your promise. As I have won the war, so that kingdom is half yours and half mine. Now from your share I take only one cow. I free you too." Thus Drone took one cow from Drone's share and freed Drupad. Drupad went away carrying a great bitterness in his heart.

Drone came home with the cow and his son Ashwatthaamaa. Kripee got very 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."

In Mahaabhaarat war he was the second Army Chief of Kaurav army, after Bheeshm, on 11th day. He held the front for five days - 11th, 12th, 13th, 14th and 15th day, and died by a rumor "Ashwatthaamaa died" spread by Bhem and seconded by Yudhishthir. In fact it was not his son that died, but only an elephant with the same name. Bheem killed him and announced that "Ashwatthaama died".


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Created by Sushma Gupta on 5/27/03
Updated on 06/09/11