Finding Draupadi

Arunangshu found a newly bought lipstick on his mother’s dressing table.

He picked it up. Standing before the mirror he was thinking of applying the lipstick on his lips.

His mother ( Shyamali) walked into the room just as he was about to apply her new lipstick. She was startled. He was startled.

‘ what are you doing with my lipstick? It’s new…I haven’t used it so far. Couldn’t you have waited?’

He smiled and handed it back to her.

‘ I forgot to tell you…I am playing Draupadi in our college production…rehearsals start this evening’

Arunangshu said.

‘ That’s great!’

His mother said as she started to get ready . She would have to go out soon. Arunangshu’s father must be waiting downstairs for Shyamali.

‘ Mom…’


His mother looked at him.

‘ As you and dad had told me several times not to keep in head what other people are saying about me… my strangeness, my effeminate demeanour, still…you know sometimes it becomes very difficult to cope with bullying…’

Shyamali came close to Arunangshu.

‘ Aruna… when you got your parents supporting you to the fullest…don’t you be afraid… just keep on doing all the good works and you will see everything will fall into proper place…eventually all things do…’

‘But mom…’

‘Okay… tell me… who is the person who is bullying you the most?’

‘ well…he is Deepak… he is somewhat a body builder type… flexing muscles infront of girls to get some appreciation…he has a gang of boys…’

Just then Arunangshu’s dad came in.

‘What’s the matter?’

‘Aruna , our dear Aruna is getting upset again because someone called Deepak is bullying him…’

Shyamali reported.

Arunangshu’s dad looked at his watch.

‘We will have to go out soon to office… but as you have raised an issue…let me tell you onething… try to help Deepak… he must be helpless in one front or other…try to find that…’

Arunangshu’s dad, Shivputra , said that with a tinkle in his eyes.

Arunangshu was amazed by his father’s wisdom.

‘Yes… yes dad… I will…’

Later in the evening when the rehearsal started, the director told everyone present who were part of the play, that he had made a change in the script. Instead of praying to Krishna, Draupadi would have to pray to the Sun God , to help and save her from humiliation at the court of the kauravas when the ‘disrobing scene ‘ of Draupadi would be performed.

Everyone was surprised, to some extent bewildered.

But the director’s order can never be violated.

So Arunangshu prayed to Sun God to save Draupadi.

The rehearsal went well.

This minor change was soon adapted.

Just after coming out of the rehearsal, near the gate of the college canteen Arunangshu found Deepak standing. He was talking to someone over phone.

Arunangshu was feeling the sense of discomfort within . He thought of hurriedly passing by that place.

But he heard Deepak’s voice.

It was very soft, almost pleading.

‘Please Rupsa, don’t you do this to me…You can’t do this … please…’

Arunangshu was somewhat curious.


His classmate.

He knew Deepak was trying to woo Rupsa…but what happened.

Returning home he called Rupsa.

Rupsa told him that Deepak and she had sex . Though it was not any rash act but quite a pre planned one and mutually agreed upon, but Deepak was found to be a worthless fellow by Rupsa and with another guy really following her for the last few weeks, it had been a sane idea to dump Deepak.

Arunangshu , after hearing that decided to call Deepak.

It was not hard to get the phone number of Deepak.

He told Deepak of Rupsa’s plan, without any distortion.

‘Will you be a witness if Rupsa denies having said that?’

‘Yes I will’

Arunangshu said in firm voice.

Perhaps there was something in his voice.

It did not sound treble like.

It did not carry that effeminate tone.

Deepak was a bit surprised by that voice of Arunangshu it seemed.

‘Good… its good to find you Draupadi! Now you will see how the table turns!’

Deepak said.

Arunangshu put his fingertip on the red button of the phone to disconnect the call.

Later at night, after dinner, when mom and dad went to sleep, Arunangshu rehearsed his dialogues of the play, standing in front of the mirror.

It went well.

Suddenly he got curious to know why the director, the revered Professor of History, who is also an amateur playwright, changed the script to include Sun God instead of Lord Krishna.

Arunangshu googled.

What he found was really interesting.

According to ‘Sarala Mahabharata’ the Oriya version of the epic Mahabharata, Sun God borrowed clothes from Draupadi for the wedding of His son Shani. At that time He promised Draupadi of all kind of help.

But at the time of ‘disrobing of Draupadi’ Sun God was busy doing His own chores.

Lord Krishna then reminded Sun God of His promise to Draupadi.

Sun God then rushed to the court room and by His blazing Light created ‘Chaya’ and ‘Maya’ which was such a spectacular thing that both the Pandavas and the Kauravas and all others present at the courtroom were simply awestruck.

Reading this Arunangshu heaved a sigh of relief.

He also thought of discussing that mythical story with his parents the next day, specially with his Dad.

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