The greatest mystery in the world———-what is the Holy Grail ? How were the pyramids constructed ? Who made the scribblings in the Nazca desert?
It is—” Who character-assassinated the Pandavas ? And why?”
The first answer we still do not know. (I have my hypothesis—will talk about it at the end) But some of the greatest minds of this age have at last put their fingers on the answer to the second.
It was all a part of an insidious plot to denigrate Hinduism.
Think about it for a second. The Vedas did not allow a woman to have multiple husbands. Neither does the Indian Penal Code for that matter. Yet why is Draupadi shown as 5 husbanded ? Is the story of Kunti not looking back and saying “share it among yourself” believable ? I mean the Mahabharata is such a “believable” story grounded in reality—why then this point of aberration where something patently illogical has been inserted into an uber-realistic narrative?
Who put the naughty bits in ? Why did Puneet Issar sneer “Paanch Patiyon Wali Panchali” at Draupadi and point to his unmentionables ? Was that part of the original Mahabharata or did some pondy theatre wallah punch that one in for the sake of “masala” ?
Even thinking about it makes me livid. Had Ashwathama not killed off Draupadi’s offsprings, they surely should have sued for libel. Actually Janamejaya should have done it had he not been so goddamn busy with that Sarpajagna.
Just look at the way Pandavas comes off in the Mahabharata. Pandu, the man who started it all, is a weakling who cannot consummate his marriage with 2 voluptuous beauties—at least Madri was one according to the Mahabharata.
Hold it. He is not the man who started it all. He himself was produced by the dubious union of a very unclean, unhygenic sadhu and a shocked Rani who turned pale at the ordeal. (A standard arranged marriage suhag raat scenario).
If the calumny had been only directed towards the menfolk, it would be kind of okay. Kunti comes off even worse. Pre-marital sex and abandoning the baby. In today’s world she would be on the Maury show as a guest in “Who’s your real mummy?” And then if one indiscretion is not enough—-she keeps on “getting jiggy with it ” even after marriage so much so that all her kids have different fathers none of them being her legal husband. She even gets Madri in on the act —she begets children with the lord of the horses —–nudge nudge wink wink. (hung like a ….)
Pandu dies in a transport of passion……and his sons end up sharing the same wife. The eldest has a gambling problem, the next one is a glutton, the third one is arrogant and was also an eunuch for a year and the last two ones did nothing of note. Oh , will the shame never end?
Just one small matter though . If someone tries to rewrite (as the sages are doing) the Mahabharata with the 5 husband thing bowdlerized , then how will the writers explain Yudhisthir’s right to gamble away Draupadi —-does gambling away his brother’s wife make him look more heroic ? How would Draupadi’s sin of loving Arjuna more than the rest be explained if he is her only husband ?
Well who cares ? I am sure suitable modifications can be made to explain all these small issues—after all remember how George Lucas developed a romantic angle between Skywalker and Leia (even made them kiss passionately) in Star Wars and then made them brother-sister in subsequent editions to resolve the triangle brewing between them and Han Solo ?
Now the last part of the puzzle—who spread these horrible rumors about the characters of Kunti and Draupadi ? I think I know who.
Bekarna. Yes. The guy who escaped. The only Kaurav who was spared by the Pandavas to look after Dhritarashtra and Gandhari. Did you ever hear of him after that? No you did not. Because he vanished and spun the spin of all spins.
What he could not do with weapons he did with his “media manipulation” so much so that the abiding image of Duryodhana will always be the hero vanquished on the battlefield by unfair means—dying but not broken.
While Draupadi shall always be remembered as the lady who had 5 husbands none of whom stood up for her when she was being disrobed.