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The Game of Dice

Stay at Lakshagruha

Duryodhan, Dushasan, Karna and Shakuni plan to kill the Paandav. Dhruturashtra on Duryodhan's say sends Pandav and Kunti to the town of Varanavat. There they stay in Lakshagruha, a house built by Duryodhan. They stay here for almost a year. Vidur informs Pandav of Duryodhan's plan to set the house on fire. Kunti started an annachatra. When a tribal woman came with her 5 sons, she intoxicated them. At night Bheem set the house on fire, and they all ran for life. On seeing the charred remains in Lakshagruha, it was declared that Kunti and her sons had died. No more were the men of Duryodhan hunting for them. No doubt, this was a cruel act. But given a choice to kill or die, the survival instinct won.

Bheem slays Hidimba

When running away from Varnavat, the Paandav are attacked by a tribal king Hidimb. Bheema kills Hidimb. His sister, Hidimbaa requests Bheem to marry her. It was against the social law to marry before the elder brother got married. Neither did Bheem wish to marry Hidimba. But Kunti saw an opportunity, to gain a friend and shelter at least for sometime. She asked Bheem to marry Hidimbaa, and stay with her until he fathered one son. They stayed with Hidimbaa for nearly a year. After the birth of Ghatotakach Pandav left the forest.

Bheem kills Bakasur

Pandav and Kunti go to EkchakraNagari. Here they stay for about a year, with a Brahmin family. Each day, one family of this town has to send one person to Bakasur, the man eating cannibal. When its the turn of this Brahmin family, Bheema goes to Bakasur. He kills Bakasur and sternly warns his community to stop eating humans, or be prepared to die like Bakasur. Pandava and Kunti leave Ekchakra Nagari for Draupadi's swayamwar.

Drupadi Swayamvar

Many kings and princes including Yadav brothers Krushn and Balram gather for the Swayamvar. Krushn recognizes the Pandav. He secretly meets Kunti and the Pandav after the night fall. All assembled kings fail the condition to hit the eye of a moving toy fish. When Karna is about to try, Draupadi declares that she will not marry a sutaputra. Pandav are sitting amongst the audience, disguised as Brahmins. Arjun is able to hit the target. Enraged kings attack the Pandav. Bheema & Arjun defeat the kings assembled there.

Pandav marry Draupadi. Now with the support of Panchal and the Yadav, Pandava declare that they are alive. On returning to Hastinapur, they demand for their share of the kingdom. Dhruturashtra divides the Kuru kingdom among the princes. He gives the barren and forest lands (Khandava Van) to the Paandav. Duryodhan becomes the crown prince of Hasinapur.

About 8 years at Indraprastha

Arjun and Krishna burn parts of the Khandava Van, to build the new city of Indraprastha. (Today's Delhi). They start ruling part of Kuru region from Indraprastha.

During this time 5 sons are born to Draupadi from the five Pandav brothers: Prativindhya, Sutasom, Shatatik, Shrutakarma and Shrutakirti.

To save a pack of cattle (from wolves?), Arjun has to disturb Yudhisthir & Draupadi to fetch his weapons. As a result, he goes to exile for a year. During this time he marries: Ulupi, Chitrangada and Krishna's sister Subhadra. Arjun fathers two sons during this time: Babruvahan is born to Chitrangada and Abhimanyu to Subhadra.

During these years, Yudhishthir married Pouravi and Devika. Bheem married Balandhara. Sahadev married Vijaya.

Bheema kills Jarasandh

Paandav decide to perform the Rajasuya Yadnya. The mighty king of Magadh, Jarashandha poses a threat Rajasuya Yadnya. Krushn has been harrassed by Jarasandh in the past. Thus Krushn asks Bheema to kill Jarasandha. Arjun, Krushn and Bheem go to the Magadha capital disguised as Brahmins. Bheema kills Jarasandha in a duet. Bheem coronates Jarasandha's son Sahadev to the throne of Magadha. Pandav Sahadev marries a daughter of Jarasandha.

Rajsuya Ydnya

Pandav perform the Rajasuya Yadnya. Many kings gather for the Yadnya. Among them is Shishupal the king of Chedi. Shishupal is the son of Vasudev's sister, Shrutvata. Since childhood there is some rivalry between Krushn and Shishupal. It kept growing with time. To top it, Krushn kidnapped Shishupal's bride, Rukmini before her wedding.

During the rajasuya yadnya, Krushn was given the honour of chief guest. This triggred the rage of Shishupal. He spoke openly, and lowly of Krushn in the assembly. On realising that a battle might ensue among the assembled kings, Krushn killed Shishupal. Krushn then installed Shishupal's son to the throne of Chedi. Nakul married Karenumati, a daughter of Shishupal.

Among other kings, Kaurav are also present at the Rajasuya Yadnya. They are jealous of Pandav after seeing the palace and kingdom of Indraprastha.

Dyut and departure for 12 years exile

Dhruturashtra sends an invitation to Yudhishthir to play dice. Around 29 years old, Yudhishthir goes to Hastinapur with brothers, wives, children and mother. The dice match is played in a newly built hall. Shakuni plays the match instead of Duryodhan. With a baised dice, Shakuni keeps on winning everything that Yudhishthir bets. Pandav and Draupadi become slaves of Kaurav. Dushasan drags Draupadi to the court. Shamelessly, Duryodhan says: "As they are now our slaves, I command that they disrobe." On hearing these words, the 5 Pandav brothers remove their uttariya (a long piece of cloth worn on the shoulders, like a shawl) and keep it aside. Draupadi, who was wearing only one robe (ekvastra) denied to discard it. Druyodhan ordered Dushasan to disrobe Draupadi. At this command, Dushasan gleefully tried to get hold of her robe. Surging with rage Bheem thundered, "I swear, I'll kill you and drink your blood Dushasan!" These words from Bheem stopped Dushasan from disrobing Draupadi, and trembling he sat on the floor. Years later when Bheem killed Dushasan in the Great War, he asked "With which hand did you pull Draupadi by her hair?" He did not ask "With which hand did you pull Draupadi's clothes?" It was Bheem's rage, and his capability at doing what he uttered, that saved Draupadi, not Krushn's divine intervention. [8]

Frightened Dhruturashtra asks for forgiveness for his sons. He asks Draupadi to demand any three wishes. Draupadi asks for only two: liberation of herself and her husbands from slavery. Dhruturashtra granted the kingdom back to Yudhishthir.

When the Paandav were on their way to Hastinapur, Dhruturashtra again invited them to play dice. Yudhishthir yet again looses. This time the loosing party goes in exile for 12 years followed by one year of hiding. Pandav, wives, children, servants, soilders, with chariots and horses leave for the the forest. Kunti stays in Hastinapur with Vidur. Few days later all the other Paandav wives and their children go back to stay with their fathers. Draupadi's sons are sent to stay with Drupad. Paandav, Draupadi, few servants and army continue to live in the forest.