Updated: May 17, 2012 16:59 IST

Duryodhana was not the villain

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Oru Vazhakku… Duriyodananai Adharithu…by S. Vijayakumar
Oru Vazhakku… Duriyodananai Adharithu…by S. Vijayakumar

Kunti was the schemer, who worked meticulously, even ruthlessly, to put her offspring on the Hastinapur throne. Krishna assisted his aunt and together they worked out a plan and executed it with precision. Bhishma and Drona were in the Kauravas' camp but operated in the Pandavas' favour.

Yudhishtira was not the honest, upright and valorous human being as believed. He was, on the contrary, addicted to gambling and a coward who refused to face the battle field.

Karna was the much wronged warrior, better in mettle than any of the Pandavas and for this reason given a raw deal by everyone, including his mother Kunti.

Generosity was both his strength and weakness, exploited to the hilt by power-mongers (read Krishna and company). This cost the Kauravas heavily.

S. Vijayakumar builds up the case in this vein to establish that Duryodhana was not the wicked usurper but a guileless prince, who valiantly fought for what belonged to him. If Krishna indulged in skulduggery to win the land for Kunti's sons, Sakuni used his knowledge of statecraft to guide his nephew. What about the infamous Draupati vastrahaparana scene? It never happened, argues the author. This is an interpolation not found in authentic sources and anyway, Duryodhana, known for his gallantry and respect for women, would not have stooped to such a level.

‘Oru Vazhakku Duryodhananai Adharithu' does engage the reader's attention showing incidents and characters from a fresh perspective, although not all of it is new. The epic is known as a tale of intrigue and treachery but how many will subscribe to the author's viewpoint that seeks to glorify a villain is the question.

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This is quite interesting. Unfortunately I cannot read Tamil. Is this book available in English?

from:  Gokul Krishnan N B
Posted on: May 28, 2012 at 21:50 IST
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