The Swayamvara(The Marriage)

As the Pandavas grew older,so did their valour and fame.More than their enemies,their cousins,the Kauravas,grew jealous and were at the forefront in devising plans to get rid of the Pandavas forever.It was no secret that Duryodhana hated Bhima the most and once he tried to kill Bhima by drugging him to sleep and then throwing him into the water .It was by great fortune that Bhima escaped his doom.

Years later with the help of Karna and Sakuni,Duryodhana made a even more daring attempt at the lives of Pandavas.This time,he decided to construct a palace made out of inflammable substances, mainly wax, and then burn it by the veil of night.

Pandavas would have surely succumbed to their fate,hadn’t it for the timely intervention of Vidura ,the chief counsellor of King Dhritarashtra .Anyhow,they decided to keep low for a few days and disguised themselves as poor Brahmins while Duryodhana & Co. rejoiced in their false victory.

It was during their stay in Ekachakra as poor Brahmins that Bhima made short work of the rakshasa Bakasura.Bakasura had disposed the true sovereign of Ekachakra and was ensuing a single handed rule of terror.

But after the slaying of Bakasura,the Pandavas couldn’t stay in the city for long because Duryodhana would surely understand who was behind it since there was none as powerful as Bhima.

Pandavas were pondering on what to do, when they heard about the swayamvara of Draupadi who was the daughter of King Drupada,ruler of Panchala.Hence they made haste to Panchala to take part in the swayamvara.

After all the kshatriyas had failed to lift the bow of Shiva and shoot five consecutive arrows through a small aperture of a revolving wheel fixed at the top.Arjuna succeeded and won the hand of Draupadi.It must be mentioned that Karna had an equal chance of succeeding.But he was stopped from taking part by Draupadi.She said that he was a lower caste and hence she could not marry him even if he succeeded.

Finally,when the victorious Arjuna brought Draupadi home, Kunti without knowing it was a woman,told them to share whatever they had won. As it was the custom to share equally whatever food or other amenities the brothers got during the day.

Hence,Draupadi became the wife of all the five brothers and hence came to be known as Panchali.

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