The Killing of the Elephant Kuvalayapida."
After taking Their baths and finishing all other morning duties, Krishna and Balarama could hear the beating of the kettledrums in the wrestling camp. They immediately prepared themselves to proceed to the spot to see the fun. When Krishna, and Balarama reached the gate of the wrestling camp, They saw a big elephant of the name Kuvalayapida being tended by the mahout. The mahout was deliberately blocking their entrance by keeping the elephant in front of the gateway. Krishna could understand the purpose of the mahout, and He prepared Himself by tightening His dress before combating the elephant. He began to address the mahout in a very grave voice, as resounding as a cloud: "You miscreant caretaker, give way and let me pass through the gate. If you block my way, I shall send you and your elephant to the house of death personified."
At this the cruel and angry minded mahout prompted the elephant, who taking great speed caught Thee in its tusks. As though in play. Krishna then hid between the elephant's legs for sometime and then came out smiling sweetly. The elephant then moved before Krishna, like inevitable death. It rushed towards Him and tried to catch Him with its trunk, but Krishna, very dexterously moved behind the elephant. Being able to see only to the end of its nose, the elephant could not see Krishna hiding behind its legs, but it tried to capture Him with its trunk. Krishna again very quickly escaped capture, and He again ran behind the elephant and caught its tail. Holding the elephant by its tail, Krishna began to pull it, and with very great strength. . He then slipped away from the elephant's view and ran to its back. Then, falling down on the ground, Krishna placed Himself in front of the elephant's two legs and caused it to trip and fall. Krishna immediately caught hold of the trunk and pulled the elephant down. When the elephant and caretaker fell, Krissna jumped up on the elephant's back and broke it and killed the caretaker also. After killing the elephant, Krsna took an ivory tusk on His shoulder. From there emerged priceless large pearls which Krishna gave to his friend asking him to get them made into a beautiful necklace and give it to Radhaa.
The brothers entered the arena. The people were at once attracted by the divine glow on their faces. They werethrilled beyond measure that the elephant had been killed. Among themselves,they started talking about the deeds and glories of Balarama and Krishna. At last the trumpets sounded and the signal was given for the games to start. Chanura, the chief wrestler, approached Krishna and said, with utmost courtesy,"O Krishna and Balarama! Your fame as renowned wrestlers has reached the ears of our king, the great Kamsa. Therefore you have been invited to this wrestling match. We, who are the subjects of the king have to do his bidding and so werequest you to match your wrestling skill with ours."Now Krishna loved this sport, one which he had indulged in so often with the gopas, when they were out in the forests with their cows. But he answered, "We,who live in the forests are also the subjects of the King of Bhoja. We too, must do his bidding. But we will wrestle with our equals, that there may be no sense of injustice or foul play."
Chanura replied with great cunning, "Neither you nor your brother is young inexperience. You killed an elephant just now, which had the strength of athousand elephants, as though you were at play. You should not, therefore,hesitate to wrestle with us. Measure your strength with mine and let Balaramatackle Mustika."
The brothers accepted the challenge. Soon, they were locked in fight with the two mighty wrestlers. People grew afraid to watch the supple young bodies of the boys in the grip of the strong-muscled bodies of the seasoned wrestlers, glistening with oil and sweat. They protested that the fight was unequal and cried out to put a stop to it. Krishna now thought that he had dallied enough. He started hitting his opponent hard with his hands, feet and knees. Chanura could not take the deadly blows and fainted a number of times. With a last spurt, he rose and struck. Krishna on the chest with the double force of both fists. Krishna received the blow as an elephant receives a flower garland. Then he caught Chanura by the arms and whirling him round and round, dashed him to the ground with such immense force that he did not even have the opportunity to draw his last breath! His body, mangled, lay in the dust, motionless in death. Similarly, Balarama killed Mustika and he too, lay still with streams of blood pouring forth from his mouth. Then he killed Kuta with his fist and Krishna killed Sala with merely akick of His foot. All the other wrestlers fled from the arena in great terror.
Krishna Balarama danced joyfully as they used to in Vrindavana. They were soon joined by the gopas with their tinkling bells making sweet dance music. The trumpets sounded and the crowds rose from their seats crying, "Well done!""Bravo!" "Bravo!"Kamsa fumed and seethed with rage. His eyes were red with anger and his body trembled violently with the force of uncontrolled emotions. He ordered the trumpets to be silenced, and shouted, "Drive those two boys out of Mathura. Takeaway all the possessions of those vile gopas. Seize this Nanda and put him in chains. Kill the wicked Vasudeva and my father Ugrasena! Kill!! Kill!!"
But before he could even finish giving his orders, Krishna jumped onto hisplatform. Kamsa immediately drew forth his sword. But Krishna caught hold ofKamsa by his hair from which the royal crown had tumbled down. He swung himaround and threw him down into the arena, still and quite dead. Then he dragged the tyrant all around the arena so that everybody could see him. But in spite ofhis disgraceful end, Kamsa was rewarded in his last moment with a blissfulvision of the Lord in all His divine splendour. For Kamsa, although in anegative way, with constant fear and dread in his heart, had never spent even a single moment without thinking about Him!
Kamsa's eight brothers felt the insult done to their brother. They attacked Krishna and Balarama to avenge Kamsa's death. But they too, were soon overpowered and killed. Kamsa's many wives were inconsolable with grief. But Krishna consoled them and gave them solace. Krishna and Balarama then hastened to Vasudeva and Devaki and released them from their iron chains and fetters: They prostrated before them and touched their feet in salutation. Krishna also released Ugrasena, who was languishing in a dungeon where he had been thrown by his own son, Kamsa, in his impatience to get his throne.