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Bhishma to Lead the Kauravas

The Pandava army reached Kurukshetra.

The news reached Duryodhana. At once he called together his advisers. Bhishma, Drona, Kripa, Karna, Shakuni, Dusshasana - they were all there. And Duryodhana sought their advice.

Dronacharya offered sound advice:

"Duryodhana, the Pandavas are mighty heroes. And they have a huge army. And, most important of all, they enjoy God's grace. Shri Krishna himself is with them. They are dear to him as life. We have Bhishmacharya to shield us. He is elder to all of us. Make him the Commander-in-Chief."

Duryodhana bowed to his advice and made Bhishma the commander of his army. And very proudly he declared, "Our army is bigger than that of the Pandavas, and Bhishma is its commander. Now it will not be afraid of even Lord Parameshwara. Now Pandavas have to go back to the forest; who on their side can equal him?"

Karna was enraged when he heard these words. He said, "My Lord, you have gone mad. Bhishma may be able to teach Dharma. But his skin is hanging loose. He has lost his teeth. His moustache is white. His head is shaking, his shoulders droop and his back is bent. Will not the world laugh at us if he is our commander? If you want poor Bhishma to be killed, why throw him to the enemies? The mere twang of my bow will be enough."

Drona rose in anger and shouted at Kama:

"Karna, put an end to your raving. Do not blabber just because of your young blood. Do you imagine you are the equal of Bhishmacharya? He is the patriarch of the Kuru dynasty. He is elder to all of us."

Bhishma stood up. He spoke with great majesty and took an oath: "If I tail to make ten thousand heads roll before sunset every day, I am not Bhishma. If I do not force Sri Krishna to take up Sudarshana, his mighty wheel, I am not Bhishma. If I do not beat back the chariot of Arjuna, with Lord Hanuman in the flag, I am not Bhishma.

What does it matter if

Kama barks?"

The people assembled cried, tory to Bhishmacharya!"

But Kama withdrew saying that he would not fight as long as Bhishma was alive.

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Bhishma- A Honoured figure of the Indian Epic, the 'Mahabharata'
About Bhishma
"Who Are You?"
"I Speak As A Father"
My Father Must Be Happy
"This Is My Vow"
The Burdens Of All On His Shoulders
Bhishma The Hero
"I Shall Never Break My Vow"
The Grandsons
Shri Krishna In Duryodhana's Court
You are Here! Bhishma To Lead The Kauravas
Bhishma Keeps His Vow
Bhishma On A Bed Of Arrows
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