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9-Shalya Parv, 1-17
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War Day 18: Shalya as Commander-in-Chief-Day-1
18th day of War - The 1st day under the leadership of Shalya
Fall of Shalya

[9-1] Janamejaya asked - "After the killing of Karn what did the remaining Kaurav do?" Vaishampaayan Jee said - "After the fall of Karn, Duryodhan got extremely sad. He couldn't be pacified by anybody. But regarding Destiny and necessity all powerful, they again engaged in battle. After a severe fight Shalya was killed by Yudhishthir at mid-day. When Duryodhan did not find anybody else to fight with Paandav, he ran away from the battle field and hid in the depths of a lake. In the afternoon Bheem got that lake surrounded by many warriors and asked Duryodhan to come out of that lake and killed him. After killing Duryodhan, only three warriors remained alive in Kaurav army - Ashwatthaamaa, Kripaa and Kritvarmaa. In rage these warriors killed Paanchaal in the night.

Next morning Sanjaya entered the city sad, grieved, and sorrowful. He wept bitterly saying, "Alas, we all are destroyed by the killing of the king. Time is all powerful. Our all heroes have been killed by Paandav." Seeing Sanjaya coming back to city, people knew that the king has been slain so they sent condolatory notes to Dhritraashtra from all over. As Sanjaya entered the palace. Dhritraashtra was sitting there surrounded by his wife and daughters-in-law and Vidur and was still thinking about Karn's death. Sanjaya said - "I am Sanjaya. Shalya, Shakuni, Ulook, all kings, princes, Karn, Vrishsen, all Sansaptak have been slain. Duryodhan has also been killed by Bheem as he told when he took the vow to kill him - by breaking his thigh. Very few people are alive on your side, Only women are remaining. On the Paandav side there are seven people alive - five Paandav, Krishn and Saatyaki; and on your side only three - Ashwatthaamaa, Kripaa and Kritvarmaa. Time has destroyed everything."

Vaishampaayan said - "Hearing this Dhritraashtra got unconscious. Vidur also got very sad because of king's distress and fell down unconscious. Gaandhaaree and other Kuru women also got unconscious. Gradually Dhritraashtra came to senses, he said to Vidur - "O Vidur, Now I am in your shelter. I am childless." and he again got unconscious. He got unconscious several times. After a long time when he gathered himself, he told all the women, including Gaandhaaree, to retire from there, because his mind was very unsettled. Vidur then sent all women from there and consoled the king in several ways.

After the women had left, Dhritraashtra lamented and said - "My sons are dead and Paandav are safe. My heart is certainly made of thunder that it does not break upon the death of my sons. Although I had never seen them still I love them most. O Duryodhan, who will call me "Father, wake up, command me." to wake me up in the morning. Many people took up arms for your sake only. All very brave and mighty people were killed. This is all Destiny. Today my all sons, relatives and friends are dead. Now only forest is a good place for me to live. How I will tolerate Bheem's cruel words who alone has killed my hundred sons." Thus the king lamented burning with grief and continually got unconscious for a long while.

When he had gathered himself, he asked Sanjaya - "After the death of Bheeshm, Drone and Karn, who was appointed as the Chief Commander of the army? Tell me everything. Long time before Vidur told me that because of the fault of Duryodhan all the population of the Earth will be killed. I did not listen to him then. But it is coming up true. Tell me now how my on Duryodhan fought the battle. Tell me how Dhrishtdyumn, Shikhandee and Draupadee's five sons fell; and tell me how these ten people could escape? Tell me everything, O Sanjaya."

Sanjaya said - "After Arjun killed Karn, your army started running away. Although they were repeatedly asked to come back but they did not come back. On the other side Arjun started roaring with joy. Everybody got frightened hearing that roar because there was nobody after Karn who could face Arjun. They were looking for their safety. Everybody was thinking that Arjun or Bheem was following him only. Duryodhan said to his Saarathee - "Take my chariot at the back. Arjun will never be able to spot me there. If I will be able to kill Arjun, Vaasudev, Bheem and my other enemies then I will be free from debt owing to Karn." So his Saarathee took him at the rear. Many brave warriors who were without chariots or elephants and 25,000 foot soldiers also proceeded for battle. Bheem and Dhrishtdyumn killed them with arrows, but following the rules of war, Bheem did not fight with foot soldiers riding on chariot, he came down and then fought with them. He killed them all.

When Duryodhan's all army got destroyed, he himself came to challenge all Paandav. He was fighting very bravely because all Paandav were not able to face him. Duryodhan asked his running people to come back saying - "Come back, There is no place where you can save yourself from Paandav, so why not fight them back here." The chariot warriors came back to fight. Then Kripaa went to Duryodhan and said to him - "O Duryodhan, Listen to what I say to you and act upon them according to them if it pleases you. There is no better way except the duty of the battle. Only he is a Kshatriya who engages in the battle even with his own relatives. After the death of Bheeshm, Drone, Karn, Jayadrath and your brothers, what is there now for us to do? Your army is almost finished, Bheem has also almost fulfilled his vows. You have misbehaved with Paandav several times without any reason, because of them now you are in great danger. There is still time to save yourself, because there is nothing greater than self. If the self is not there, then everything will scatter everywhere. This is the policy of Brihaspati that who is weak he should make a piece, of course who is strong should fight. Yudhishthir is very kind. At the request of Dhritraashtra and Govind he will allow you to be the king. This I am not saying to you to make you lower, or to protect my life; I say this for your benefit only." After saying this he fell unconscious.

At this Duryodhan remained silent for a few moments, then spoke - "You have said the same to me whatever a friend should say at this time. But your words are not pleasing me at all, they are not acceptable to me. We have already disposed Yudhishthir from his kingdom, why should he trust me? Krishn who always thinks good to Paandav, why He should he listen to me now? When He came with the Peace proposal, I also didn't listen to Him. Draupadee can never forget what I did to her. Arjun and Keshav's hearts are one, we have seen that. After hearing the killing of Abhimanyu, He has passed his nights in sorrow. Bheem can never forgive me, he has made a terrible vow, he will break but not bow down. Krishnaa standing alone before the whole assembly in one cloth was treated cruelly by Dushaasan, Whoever remembers her can never forgive me. This fire can never be quenched by peace. I have done many Punya (good deeds), so we will follow the path of great warriors. I cannot enjoy that kingdom and life which I will get by bowing to Yudhishthir."

Thus talking they passed the night together. Shalya, Chitrasen, Shakuni, Ashwatthaamaa, Kripaa and Kritvarmaa, Dhritsen and Jayatsen all these kings passed the night there. All of them said to king that they would defeat their enemies. Then Duryodhan, still on his chariot, proceeded towards Ashwatthaamaa who knew everything about weapons consisting of four Pad and ten Ang (parts). He knew all Ved with their branches and Aakhyaan as fifth. Drone, who himself was not born of a woman, got him from a woman who herself was not born of a woman (Kripee), after worshipping Shiv. and asked his advice as to whom to appoint Commander-in-Chief of the army so that Paandav could be defeated. Ashwatthaamaa suggested the name of Shalya and Shalya also promised Duryodhan to dedicate his everything at his services. Duryodhan said - "O Maamaa (Maternal uncle), Now you are our only refuge. Slay our foes." Shalya said - "You regard Krishn and Arjun as the two foremost warriors when they are in chariot, but they together are not even equal to me. I will be the leader of your troops. I will organize the army in such a way that Paandav will never be able to break it." Then Duryodhan invested him as his Commander. Shalya again promised him to slay his enemies. After Shalya had been the Commander, everybody forgot Karn and got happy.

Hearing the cheers of Kaurav side, Yudhishthir said to Vaasudev - "Since Shalya is the Commander of enemy's army, You should act accordingly. You should find the warrior accordingly." Vaasudev said - "I know him well. I think he is like Bheeshm or Drone or Karn. In fact I do not see any warrior to match with Shalya - Shikhnadee, or Arjun, or Bheem or Saatyaki, or Dhrishtdyumn - except you. He has been slaying our troops daily, Today you kill him. As he will be killed, the victory will be ours. Do not think that he is your maternal uncle, just slay him." And Krishn went to His tent. Yudhishthir slept happily that night. So both side warriors slept happily.

Next day, Duryodhan prepared his remaining army for fighting. All, Shalya, Shakuni, Ashwatthaamaa, Kritvarma, Kripaa, everybody met your son and arrived at the understanding that none will fight individually alone with Paandav; and if anybody would fight alone, he would be slain with five kinds of sins. Thus all, including Trigart, Karn's sons, headed towards battle field under the leadership of Shalya. Your son was hopeful that after Bheeshm, Drone and Karn had been slain Shalya would slay all the Paandav in battle. On the Paandav's side, Yudhishthir divided his army in three sections, and headed towards Shalya alone."

Dhritraashtra asked - "At this time what was the strength of both armies?" Sanjaya said - "11,000 chariots, 10,700 elephants, full 200,000 horses and 3 million foot soldiers was the strength of your army; while 6,000 chariots, 6,000 elephants, 10,000 horses, 1 million foot soldiers was the strength of Paandav's army. As the fight started, your army started running away here and there.

Seeing running away his army, Shalya immediately asked his Saarathee to take his chariot towards Yudhishthir. Nakul encountered Chitrasen (Karn's son). Chitrasen cut his bow, killed his horses and Saarathe, but Nakul cut his head and he fell down. Then came Karn's two other sons - Satyasen and Sushen (Vrishsen was already killed by Arjun). Nakul killed them too. On the other side Arjun killed Sansaptak. After a long fight between Paandav and Kaurav army, Shalya proceeded towards Yudhishthir, and showered arrows on him. Bheem ran towards Shalya with the same weapon (his Gadaa) with which he challenged the Lord of Alak (friend of Maheshwar), on the mount of Kailaash and slain a large number of Guhyak to do what was agreeable to Draupadee - to take Mandar flowers. Both were fighting very bravely. Yudhishthir killed Chandrasen and Drumsen - Shalya's two chariot protectors. This fight went on for a long time, then Yudhishthir announced that either he would kill Shalya or would be killed by him. Everybody had his share in this war, now Shalya was his share. And then he proceeded towards Shalya. Duryodhan and Shalya received Yudhishthir's rain of arrows. Again they both fought very fiercely. At last Yudhishthir killed Shalya. Seeing this Shalya's younger brother came to fight, but Yudhishthir killed him too. Seeing him killed Kaurav's army scattered here and there. [Shalya, 17]


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Created by Sushma Gupta On 05/27/04
Modified on 12/05/12