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Sudhanvaa (King)

There are 3 Sudhanvaa -
(1) There was one Sudhanvaa, a king during the times of Raajaa Janak. He asked him to give him Shiv's bow and Seetaa, and when Janak did not give him both - Seetaa and Shiv's bow, he invaded Janak. Janak killed him and gave his kingdom to his younger brother.
[V-Raamaayan, 1/20/71]

(2) One Sudhanvaa was a Rishi.

(3) Sudhanvaa, The King (One Version)
Sudhanvaa was a king of a kingdom and he fought with Arjun while Arjun was wandering with Yudhishthir's Ashwamedh Yagya's horse. His story should also come in Mahaabhaarat, but it is not in Mahaabhaarat, translated by KM Ganguli. I found the following story of Sudhanvaa at

Ashwamedh Parv. When Arjun goes with Yudhishthir's Ashwamedh Yagya horse for his security. In Ashwamedh Yagya, if the released horse comes back without any disturbance then the Yagya is complete, but if somebody holds him back and does not give it and the security people of horse are also not bale to take that horse back, then the Ashwamedh Yagya is not complete.

So wandering around Yudhishthir's horse came to Sudhanvaa's country. Sudhanvaa got very pleased to see Yudhishthir's horse in his country. he was a great Vishnu Bhakt, so he thought when Arjun is here certainly he will have the opportunity to see Krishn, his Isht Dev, and to invite Him in his palace. But his mother wrongfully advised him that as he was a Kshatriya, he should fight, so he captured the horse and went in the battlefield to fight with Arjun. But Arjun could not defeat him. So he remembered Krishn. Krishn immediately came in the battlefield. Krishn explained Arjun that Sudhanvaa was a very special devotee of His. Arjun asked Krishn - "What type of devotee of yours is he?" Krishn said - "Arjun, There is no chance that you can defeat Sudhanvaa, because he has mastered many weapons."

Before starting the fighting, Sudhanvaa released an arrow to ground to show the respect to Krishn's feet. His second arrow produced a flower garland from the skies. Then he started fighting and within a short time Arjun's army reduced to half. Krishn was witnessing it all. Then Sudhanvaa had a thought to defeat Arjun. So he then recited a Mantra - "If in my life, Krishn has always been most precious to me, then this arrow should behead Arjun." Krishn knew his intention, so He moved Arjun aside and counteracted that arrow reciting this Mantra that - "If Arjun is dearer to me than my all queens, let this arrow break away." and Sudhanvaa's arrow broke away.

At this Sudhanvaa released another arrow reciting another Mantra - "If I have valued Krishn dearer to my own body throughout my life, then let this arrow behead Arjun." Krishn responded to it - "In my entire life, if Arjun's well-being has been dearer to me then my own, let this arrow break apart." and Sudhanvaa's arrow again broke. Finally Sudhanvaa put all his good deeds (Punya) on his third arrow and released the arrow. Krishn again realized it and said - "If I have looked wrong or fault in the eyes of the world for my devotee's sake and all of the seemingly irreligious things I have done for their sake actually becomes great deed, let the arrow turn back and kill Sudhanvaa." And Sudhanvaa was beheaded with the same arrow.

Sudhanvaa-Another Story
This is another version of Sudhanvaa's story found in Jaimini's Mahaabhaarat, Ashwamedh Parv. He was the 5th son of Neeldhwaj, the King of Maahishmatee Nagaree. When Arjun comes with the Ashwamedh Yagya horse of Yudhishthir, Neeldhwaj thinks, "If I will capture the Ashwamedh horse, Arjun will come to fight, and when Arjun will come to fight, Krishn will also follow him and that is how I can capture Him." so he orders his people to fight with Paandav's army and instructs them - "If anybody fails to go to the battlefield, he would be immersed in boiling hot oil." So all soldiers go to the battlefield.

Now when Neeldhwaj's 5th son named Sudhanvaa was going to battlefield, his wife Prabhaavatee requests him to make love with her. He obliges her and in this process he gets late. His father shows no exemption for him and puts him in the boiling hot oil. Sudhanvaa was also a great devotee of Krishn, so he takes Krishn's name and jumps in that boiling hot oil. The boiling hot oil becomes cool liquid for him and he is saved, Then he goes to battlefield and defeats Pradyumn, Kritavarmaa, Anushaalv, Saatyaki, even Arjun. After being defeated by Sudhanvaa, Arjun remembers Krishn and He immediately comes there from Hastinaapur. After a fierce fight filled with miracles, Sudhanvaa is beheaded but his headless body continues to fight. Krishn takes the head and throws it up. Shiv captures his head and adds it to his collection to his Mund Maalaa.

Arjun now decided to shoot three arrows. Krishn was working as his back up. On the first arrow Krishn put His all Punya, but Sudhanvaa cut it saying that "if he has Bhakti for Krishn in his heart then this arrow should go
On the second arrow Krishn put His



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Created by Sushma Gupta on 5/27/03
Updated on 04/22/13