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War Day 17: Karn as Chief Army Chief-Day 2 (3)
17th day of War - The 2nd day under the leadership of Karn Contd...
Fall of Dushaasan

Arjun got ready to kill Karn. Yudhishthir blessed him, after the formalities, Arjun climbed in his chariot and started towards Karn. Seeing Arjun getting ready like this most people took Karn granted as already dead. Arjun ordered Krishn to prepare his chariot ready to kill Karn. Krishn ordered Daaruk to do that. Daaruk prepared the chariot according to Krishn's instruction. Krishn said - "O Arjun, Nobody can kill Karn except you. You have celestial weapons, might and lightness of hands, but do not consider Karn like others whom you have killed so far. He is mighty, well conversant with all kinds of weapons, he knows what suits with time and place. I don't say much about him except that he is equal to you. He is friend of Dhritraashtra's sons and he hates Paandav. No one, even Devtaa along with Indra can slay him except you, so slay him today. Karn who has a sword for his tongue, a bow for his mouth, arrows for his teeth, slay him today."

He further said - "When we started this battle 16 days ago, today is the 17th day, we had lots of army, now it remains very little. Now only five great chariot warriors remain - Ashwatthaamaa, Kritvarmaa, Karn, Shalya and Kripaa. All are well versed in foul warfare. There is no need to show any compassion to anyone. Karn is the root of many evil plans for you. It was Karn who made Abhimanyu without bow. After the five warriors killed Abhimanyu all became sad except Karn and Duryodhan, they laughed. Remember Karn's words which he said to Draupadee in Kuru assembly. Only you are able to defeat Kuru army now headed by Karn." Hearing these words of Krishn, Arjun became fearless and said - "When you are my protector, I will surely kill Karn today along with his son. I will surely kill all the foes of Abhimanyu."

In the absence of Arjun, the fight was going on several fronts. Uttamaujaa killed Sushen, Karn's son. [Karn, 75]. As Bheem was still fighting in the absence of Arjun, he asked his charioteer to take his chariot to Dhritraashtra's sons. In the meantime Kuru warriors came to resist him, but could not tolerate his arrows so they ran away in all sides. Bheem said to Vishok - "I am very sad, I cannot see clearly. The king is in pain and Arjun has not yet come. I do not know if they are alive or dead. Just check my quivers and tell me what I have for now." Vishok said - "You have 60,000 arrows, and 10,000 broad-headed ones, 2,000 cloth-yard shafts and 3,000 Pradaras, and thousands and thousand of lances and scimitars. Don't worry about your weapons. They are in abundant."

Bheem said - "Vishok, Why this army is running away? It seems that Arjun has come." Vishok said - "Yes," Bheem got very happy to know this, he said to Vishok - "Since you have given me this news, I will give you 14 populous villages, hundred female slaves, and 20 chariots." Seeing Arjun coming many Kaurav warriors proceeded to face him. Thy had a severe fight but Arjun proceeded towards Karn after defeating them to kill Karn. As Bheem heard that Arjun had come he started killing enemy's army recklessly.  Bheem killed 10,000 elephants, 200,200 men, 5,000 horses and a hundred chariot warriors. Seeing this killing by Bheem Duryodhan asked his Maamaa Shakuni to kill Bheem as soon as possible. Shakuni went there, but soon he was wounded by Bheem. Duryodhan took him away from the battle field to save his life. Bheem then proceeded towards Karn. He slaughtered a lots of Kaurav army. Karn was slaughtering Paanchaal army like anything. Seeing his feat Paandav army scattered here and there.

Karn asked Krishn to take his chariot towards Karn. Seeing Arjun's chariot coming towards Karn, Shalya said to Karn - "See that Paarth is coming for whom you have been longing for long time. Avoiding all other warriors, he has been forwarding towards you only. He will not be satisfied until he would have fought with you. Hearing that you wounded Yudhishthir, he is coming to you. Kaurav's army is running away with the fear of Arjun. There is no other person except you who can dispel their fear." Karn said - "Don't fear at all. I will not return from here without killing those two heroes. Victory is uncertain in battle field, slay or slain, but today I will achieve my purpose." Shalya said - "All say that he is the best chariot warrior and he is protected by Krishn then who can defeat him?"

Karn said - "I have never heard that such a chariot warrior has been born so far. Today you see my might, as I will be fighting with such a hero. It may be possible that he might kill me today. He is superb. He takes many arrows and shoots them as one. Quickly he takes them and shoots them up to two miles and his aim is never missed.

He has many Divine Astra. He got his Gaandeev and two inexhaustible quivers at the time of offering Khaandav Van to Agni Dev, a chariot from Agni, and at the same time Krishn got His Divine Chakra. He got Paashupat Astra from Shiv Jee after satisfying him in fair fight. Shiv's Paashupat Astra can destroy the three worlds, he got many Divine Astra from Indra. He killed many Daitya and Kaalkeya Raakshas too. Who is there who is superior to him. Besides, he is protected by Keshav also who is Naaraayan Himself and thus without a rival. Himvaan can be moved but not these two. But seeing them together on one chariot my heart fills with fear as well as with courage. My desire for a fight with such a warrior will be fulfilled today."

Karn asked his people to close Arjun's path to make him tired, so that he could easily kill him. So many warriors - Kripaa, Ashwatthaamaa, Duryodhan etc - proceeded to stop Arjun, but Arjun fought with them bravely, killed many of them and made his way to come to Karn.  On the way he met Bheem, told him about the welfare of Yudhishthir and proceeded. Then he met Duryodhan's ten brothers, all younger to Dushaasan, he killed them all and continued to proceed. (see Arjun Kills Dhritraashtra's 10 Sons). On the way he met Sansaptak. Seeing surrounded by them and others Bheem came to help him. On the way he killed 10,000 horses and numerous foot soldiers. Seeing Arjun's might, the Kaurav started getting disappointed for Karn's life. They fled away from the field leaving Karn alone. Karn called them back. Then he proceeded towards Paanchaal and defeated them. Karn killed Kaikaya prince Vishok, so Ugrakarmaa, Commander of Kaikaya army, killed Karn's son Prasenjit. [Karn, 82] and made Paandav's five Paanchaal great warriors - Shikhandee, Uttamaujaa, Yudhaamanyu, Janamejaya and Dhrishtdyumn, inactive. Seeing this Dushaasan came to fight with Bheem.

Bheem felled him with a hit of his mace and raising it to slaughter him said to all standing there - Karn, Duryodhan, Kripaa, Kritvarmaa, and Ashwatthaamaa - "Today I shall kill this wretched Dushaasan and drink his blood, let anybody come and save him." After saying this he took out his sword and ripped of his breast. He then drank his blood with a great relish saying - "I regard this blood superior to my mother's milk, milk, yogurt, honey, etc." Then He said with great anger - "What more can I do to you? Death has rescued you from me." Seeing Bheem drinking Dushaasan's blood, people started calling him Raakshas. Many ran away in fear and many could not hold their weapons. Seeing this Yudhaamanyu killed Karn's brother Chitrasen. Bheem said - "Our sleep at the palace of Pramaan Koti, mixing deadly poison to our food, the bites of black cobras, robbing of our kingdom by cheating, our exile in the forest, cruel behavior with Draupadee, our sufferings at Viraat's palace, all were done through the good counsel of Shakuni, Duryodhan and Karn. We could never live happily. I am going to fulfill my other vow, killing of Duryodhan, soon." [Karn, 83] See here "When Draupadee Tied Her Hair?"

Sanjaya continued - "After Dushaasan was killed, your ten sons rushed towards Bheem - Nishang, Kavach, Paas, Durdhar, Dhanurgrah, Alolup, Saha, Shand, Vaatveg, Suvarchas - to check him, but Bheem killed them with ten arrows only. Seeing this Kaurav army fled away, even Karn trembled with fear. Shalya understood his mind, he said calmly - "Don't be grieved. These people running away because of Bheem. Those Paandav are coming towards you, keeping a Kshatriya's duty in your mind, proceed to face Arjun. See your son Vrishsen is already rushing towards them." As Vrishsen afflicted Nakul, killed his horses, broke his sword etc, Arjun asked Krishn to take him to Vrishsen and there he killed Vrishsen before killing Karn himself. Seeing this Karn ran towards Arjun and Krishn in anger. [Karn, 85]


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Created by Sushma Gupta On 05/27/04
Modified on 04/08/13