By Brajendra Singh
The epic battle of Mahabharat was approaching its bloody climax. The Pandav had
suffered grievous losses, including the death of Arjun's son Abhimanyu, who had
been trapped inside the chakravyuh and then been simultaneously attacked by
several senior warriors.
However, it was the Kaurav who had the real catastrophes heaped on them. One by
one they had lost their mightiest fighters. Bheeshm Pitamah, the clan's
patriarch, had been felled. Dronacharya, the preceptor, was dead, as were most
of the hundred royal brothers. And it was only on the previous day that
Duhshasan, the second eldest among the Kaurav siblings, had been torn apart by
Bheem, the mace-wielding wrestler.
The formidable Karn(n), offspring of the Sun god, now took over command of the
Kaurav army. Egged on by the eldest Kaurav prince Duryodhan, Karn(n) decided to
personally take on Arjun and finish him off once and for all. Seeing his
opportunity late that afternoon, Karn(n) cut his way ruthlessly through the
Pandav forces, and
headed straight for Arjun. So violent and vicious was Karn(n)'s offensive that
Arjun's defences soon crumbled before it. Karn(n) then moved in for the kill.
Arjun's charioteer, Lord Krishna, realised that only a miracle could save his
ward now. And so it happened. Krishna caused the sun to set prematurely; and
Karn(n), the honourable warrior that he was, postponed the day of judgement
since fighting after sunset was banned in those days.
Back in Hastinapur, Sanjay, who had been endowed ad hoc with televisionary
ability, narrated the day's events to the blind Kaurav King Dhritarashtr. The
latter immediately realised that the Kaurav clan was doomed, since Krishna,
despite having vowed not to physically take part in the battle, was obviously
using his supernatural powers to help the Pandav.
Dhritrashtra's mind immediately went to the crown jewels of the Hastinapur royal
house, a fabulous of treasure trove that had been built up over the centuries
since the beginning of the dynasty. Somehow he had to keep the hoard out of the
hands of the Pandav, whom he had now begun to passionately hate.
It is at this juncture when he was filled with ominous prospect that a plan came
to his mind. One that would not ensure that the Pandav never found the priceless
hidden cache, but also guaranteed its easy recovery in the unlikely event that
the Kaurav emerged victorious from the battle raging at Kurukshetra.
That night, a caravan under the command of a trusted aide, was despatched with
the royal jewels it proceeded straight to Indraprasth, the Pandav capital.
Taking advantage of the darkness and the absence of menfolk away at the
battlefield, the treasure was buried at the intersection of two main roads.
After all, Dhritarashtr had rightly reasoned, the Pandav (who eventually won the
battle and totally destroyed the Kaurav) would hardly
think of the jewels buried in their own metropolis.
It is rumoured that excavations undertaken at the Old Fort (Purana Kila) in the
early 1960s brought forth a tablet inscribed with the above story.
Unfortunately, time has wrought extensive changes on the landmarks that could
lead up to the hoary treasure.
The exact location of the treasure is impossible to ascertain. That is the
reason why since then since 1960 the authorities have been continually and
furiously digging up the roads of Delhi. In a desperate bid to find the
Hastinapur jewels, put away darling by the blind Dhritrashtra's men somewhere in
the entrails of Indraprasth's earth.