Chapter [Sarga] 28

Introduction

Khara the demon brother of Shuurpanakha confronts Rama when all of his valiant warriors are eliminated. He wages a fearful war showing all his expertise and he even brings down the amour of Rama with his arrows. The combat of Rama and Khara takes a longer time, as Khara is not easy-to-deal demon.


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nihatam duuSaNam dR^iSTvaa raNe trishirasaa saha |
kharasya api abhavat traaso dR^iSTvaa raamasya vikramam || 4-28-1

1. raNe trishirasaa saha= in war, Trishira, along with; nihatam duuSaNam dR^iSTvaa= slain, Duushana, on seeing; raamasya vikramam dR^iSTvaa = Rama's, intrepidity, on seeing [inasmuch as]; kharasya traasaH api abhavat = of Khara, intimidated, even, became.

Khara is intimidated on seeing the elimination of Duushana along with Trishira inasmuch as the intrepidity of Rama is concerned. [4-28-1]

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sa dR^iSTvaa raakSasam sainyam aviSahyam mahaabalam |
hatam ekena raameNa duuSaNaH trishiraa api || 4-28-2
tad balam hata bhuuyiSTham vimanaaH prekSya raakSasaH |
aasasaada kharo raamam namucir vaasavam yathaa || 4-28-3

2, 3. saH kharaH = he Khara; mahaabalam aviSahyam raakSasam sainyam = mighty force, insufferable, demon's, force; ekena raameNa hatam = by lone one, by Rama, as annihilated; trishiro duuSaNaH api= Trishira, Duushana, even [as eliminated]; dR^iSTvaa = on seeing; raakSasaH tat balam= demons, that, force; hata bhuuyiSTham= destructed, wholly; prekSya= on observing - apprehending; vi manaaH= without, heart - became apprehensive; namuciH vaasavam yathaa= Namuchi [the demon,] to Indra, as with; raamam aasasaada= at Rama, reached out - lunged at.

On seeing the annihilation of the insufferable and mighty force of demons, even that of Duushana and Trishira by lone Rama, and thus to apprehend that the demonic force is wholly destructed, that demon Khara became apprehensive, and then he lunged at Rama, as with demon Namuchi who once lunged at Indra. [4-28-2, 3]

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vikR^iSya balavat caapam naaraacaan rak{}ta bhojanaan |
kharaH cikSepa raamaaya kruddhaan aashii viSaan iva || 4-28-4

4. kharaH= Khara; balavat caapam vikR^iSya = forcefully, bow [string,] drawing out; kruddhaan aashii viSaan iva= furious one [arrows,] snake, venomous ones, like [arrows]; rakta bhojanaan= that have blood, as their meals; naaraacaan raamaaya cikSepa = iron-arrows, for Rama, discharged.

Forcefully drawing the bowstring fitted with iron-arrows, which looked like furious serpents of venom ingesting only blood, Khara discharged them on Rama. [4-28-4]

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jyaam vidhunvan subahushaH shikSayaa astraaNi darshayan |
cacaara samare maargaan sharai ratha gataH kharaH || 4-28-5

5. ratha gataH kharaH= chariot, who is on, Khara; su bahushaH = in very, many ways; jyaam vidhunvan= bowstring, fidgeting; shikSayaa= by [his] training [skills in warfare]; astraaNi darshayan= missiles, brandishing; samare= in war - on battleground; sharaiH= with arrows [showing expertise]; maargaan cacaara = in many ways - in many a manner, moved about.

Fidgeting with bowstring in many a way, brandishing missiles with many a skill, Khara moved about the battleground in many a manner, seated on chariot and showing his expertise with arrows. [4-28-5]

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sa sarvaaH ca disho baaNaiH pradishaH ca mahaarathaH |
puurayaamaasa tam dR^iSTvaa raamo api sumahat dhanuH || 4-28-6
sa saayakaiH dur.hviSahaiH sa sphulingaiH iva agnibhiH |
nabhaH cakaara avivaram parjanya iva vR^iSTibhiH || 4-28-7

6. mahaa rathaH saH= great-chariot fighter, he that Khara; sarvaaH dishaH ca pra dishaH ca= all, stretches, and, inter-stretches, also; baaNaiH puurayaamaasa= with arrows, started to fill; tam dR^iSTvaa raamaH api= him, on seeing, Rama, even; su mahat dhanuH puurayaamaasa= [his] very, great, bow, started to pull the bowstring - take aim [in reciprocation]; saH= he [Rama]; dur vi SahaiH= not, verily, endurable - unendurable ones; sa sphulingaiH agnibhiH iva = with, sparks, [tongues of] fire, like; saayakaiH= with [such] arrows; parjanyaH vR^iSTibhiH nabhaH iva= Rain-god, with torrents, as with; a+ vivaram= without, leeway; cakaara = made [chocking the sky.]

That great chariot-fighter Khara then started to fill all the stretches and inter-stretches with arrows, seeing that even Rama reciprocally started to take aim with his bow Rama, and then filled and made the sky less of leeway with verily unendurable arrows that are like tongues of fire emitting sparks, as with Rain-god chocking the sky with torrents, less of latitude. [4-28-6, 7]

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tad babhuuva shitaiH baaNaiH khara raama visar.hjitaiH |
pari aakaasham anaakaasham sarvataH shara sa.nkulam || 4-28-8

8. khara raama visarjitaiH= by Khara, by Rama, discharged; shitaiH baaNaiH= with sharp, arrows; tat pari aakaasham= that, vault of, sky - in and around there; sarvataH shara sankulam= everywhere, arrows, riotous; an+aakaasham babhuuva= without, empty space, it became.

No empty space is left out in the space around since it has become riotous with the sharp arrows discharged by Rama and Khara from everywhere. [4-28-8]

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shara jaala aavR^itaH suuryo na tadaa sma prakaashate |
anyonya vadha sa.mrambhaat ubhayoH sa.mprayudhyatoH || 4-28-9

9. anyaH anyaH vadha samrambhaat= one, another, to slay, in excitement; ubhayoH= both; sam pra yudhyatoH= mutually, well, while warring; tadaa= then; shara jaala aavR^itaH= arrows, by mesh, obscured; suuryaH na prakaashate sma = sun, not, shining, he is.

While both of them are warring with excitement to slay one another, then the sun obscured with the mesh of arrows has not shined. [4-28-9]

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tato naaliika naaraacaiH tiikSNa agraiH ca vikar.hNibhiH |
aajaghaana raNe raamam totrair iva mahaa dvipam || 4-28-10

10. tataH= then; Khara; raNe= in combat; naaliika= tubular; naaraacaiH= with iron arrows; tiikSNa agraiH ca= acutely, edged, also; vikarNibhiH= crescent-edged arrows; raamam= Rama is; totraiH mahaa dvipam iva = with a goad, great, elephant, as with; aajaghaana= swatted.

Then with acutely edged tubular, iron, and crescent-edged arrows Khara swatted Rama in that combat, as a great elephant will be swatted with a goad. [4-28-10]

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tam rathastham dhanuS paaNim raakSasam paryavasthitam |
dadR^ishuH sarva bhuutaani paasha hastam iva a.ntakam || 4-28-11

11. ratha stham= who is on chariot; dhanuS paaNim= with bow, in hand; paryavasthitam= who is in the presence, ready for a close combat; tam raakSasam= that, demon; paasha hastam antakam iva= noose, handling, Terminator, as if; sarva bhuutaani dadR^ishuH = all, beings, saw at - appeared to be.

When charioted Khara came to the presence of Rama with bow in hand and ready for a close combat, that demon appeared to all beings as the Terminator handling his noose. [4-28-11]

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hantaaram sarva sainyasya pauruSe paryavasthitam |
parishrantam mahaasattvam mene raamam kharaH tadaa || 4-28-12

12. kharaH= Khara; sarva sainyasya hantaaram = all, [demonic] forces, eliminator of; pauruSe paryavasthitam= in boldness, abiding - shown his mettle with boldness; mahaa sattvam= greatly, indefatigable one; raamam= at Rama; tadaa= then - by now; pari shrantam= wholly, fatigued; mene = presumed to be.

Khara presumed that greatly indefatigable Rama is wholly fatigued by now, though he has shown his mettle of boldness in eliminating all of the demonic forces, all the while. [4-28-12]

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tam si.mham iva vikraantam si.mha vikraanta gaaminam |
dR^iSTvaa na udvijate raamaH si.mhaH kSudra mR^igam yathaa || 4-28-13

13. simham iva vikraantam= at him [Khara,] like, prancing; simha vikraanta gaaminam= one who is - lion, pace, with the gait; tam dR^iSTvaa= him [Khara,] on seeing; raamaH= Rama; simhaH kSudra mR^igam yathaa = lion, at least, beat, as with; na udvijate= not, agitated - unruffled.

On seeing Khara who is prancing like a lion with a gait of a lion, Rama is unruffled like a lion that sees a least beast. [4-28-13]

For the last compound in second foot the other versions contain si.mhaH si.mham iva aparam 'a lion on seeing another lion...' Firstly comparing Khara with lion and later comparing him with kshudra mR^iga 'petty animal...' is not found aesthetic by some scholars.

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tataH suurya nikaashena rathena mahataa kharaH |
aasasaada atha tam raamam pata.nga iva paavakam || 4-28-14

14. tataH= then; kharaH= Khara; suurya nikaashena sun, equalling; mahataa rathena= by great - radiant one, by chariot; raamam= to Rama; patanga paavakam iva = a moth, towards fire, as with; tam aasasaada= him - Rama, reached - attacked.

In a chariot that equals the sun in its radiance then Khara reached Rama as a moth reaches fire. [4-28-14]

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tato asya sasharam caapam muSTi deshe mahaatmanaH |
kharaH cicCheda raamasya darshayan hasta laaghavam || 4-28-15

15. tataH= then; kharaH= Khara; hasta laaghavam = hand's, skill - sleight of hand; darshayan= showing; mahaatmanaH asya raamasya= great-souled one, that, Rama's; sa sharam caapam= with, arrow, bow; muSTi deshe = at the fist, place- at handgrip; cicCheda= broke.

Showing sleight of hand Khara then broke the handgrip of the bow of that great-souled Rama along with an arrow fitted on it. [4-28-15]

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sa punaH tu aparaan sapta sharaan aadaaya varmaNi |
nijaghaana raNe kruddhaH shakra ashani sama prabhaan || 4-28-16

16. saH= he, Khara; kruddhaH= infuriated; punaH= again - still; shakra ashani sama prabhaan= Indra's, thunderbolt, equalling, in radiance; aparaan sapta sharaan aadaaya= other, seven arrows, on drawing; raNe varmaNi nijaghaana= in war, armour, hit at.

Still infuriated Khara has drawn seven more arrows that equal the radiance of Indra's thunderbolts and hit Rama's armour in that war. [4-28-16]

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tataH shara sahasreNa raamam apratima ojasam |
ar.hdayitvaa mahaanaadam nanaada samere kharaH || 4-28-17

17. tataH= then; kharaH= Khara; a+ pratima ojasam= not, equalling, in vitality; raamam= Rama is; shara sahasreNa= with arrows, a thousand; ardayitvaa= on distressing; samere mahaa naadam nanaada= in war, great blare, blared.

Then, on distressing Rama of unequalled vitality with a thousand arrows in that combat Khara blared a loud blare. [4-28-17]

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tataH tat prahatam baaNaiH khara muk{}taiH supar.hvabhiH |
papaata kavacam bhuumau raamasya aaditya varcasaH || 4-28-18

18. tataH= then; khara muktaiH= by Khara, released; su parvabhiH= those with great, egress; baaNaiH= with arrows; raamasya aaditya varcasaH= of Rama, sun-like, in resplendence; tat kavacam= that, armour; pra hatam = completely, destroyed; bhuumau papaata = on field, fell down.

With the arrows released by Khara that have a great egress, then that armour of Rama that has a sun-like resplendence is completely destroyed and fell on the field. [4-28-18]

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sa sharaiH arpitaH kruddhaH sarva gaatreSu raaghavaH |
raraaja samare raamo vidhuumo agnir iva jvalan || 4-28-19

19. sharaiH sarva gaatreSu arpitaH= with arrows, in all, limbs, given to - hit; raaghavaH saH raamaH= one from Raghu's dynasty, he that, Rama; kruddhaH= is enraged; vi dhuumaH agniH iva jvalan= without, fume, fire, like, flaring; samare raraaja = in war, flared up.

When all his limbs are hit with arrows Rama is enraged and in that war Rama flared up like a fumeless flaring fire. [4-28-19]

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tato ga.mbhiira nirhraadam raamaH shatru nibarhaNaH |
cakaara a.ntaaya sa ripoH sajyam anyan mahat dhanuH || 4-28-20

20. tataH= then; shatru nibarhaNaH= enemy, blaster; saH raamaH that, Rama; ripoH antaaya = of enemy, for ending; gambhiira nirhraadam= thunderously, blasting [bow that has]; anyat mahat dhanuH= another, great, bow; sa jyam= with bowstring; cakaara= made - strung.

Then Rama, the blaster of enemies, strung bowstring to another thunderously blasting bow, to end the enemy. [4-28-20]

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sumahat vaiSNavam yat tat atisR^iSTam maharSiNaa |
varam tat dhanuH udyamya kharam samabhidhaavata || 4-28-21

21. tat= that one - renowned bow; yat= which one; su mahat vaiSNavam dhanuH= verily, admirable, Vishnu's, bow; maharSiNaa ati sR^iSTam= by great-sage [Agastya,] well, released [awarded]; varam= the best one; tat udyamya= that, on upraising; kharam= to Khara; sam abhi dhaavata= verily, towards, rushed [rushed at.]

That which is a very admirable bow of Vishnu and that which is awarded by great-sage Agastya, upraising that choicest bow Rama rushed towards Khara. [4-28-21]

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tataH kanaka pu.nkhaiH tu sharaiH sa.mnata par.hvabhiH |
cicCheda raamaH sa.mkruddhaH kharasya samare dhvajam || 4-28-22

22. tataH= then; raamaH sam kruddhaH= Rama, highly infuriated; kanaka punkhaiH= with golden, finned ones; sannata parvabhiH = with curved, barbs; sharaiH= with such arrows; samare kharasya dhvajam in war, Khara's, flag; cicCheda= fragmented.

With arrows that have golden fins and curved barbs that highly infuriated Rama then fragmented Khara's flagstaff with flag in that war. [4-28-22]

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sa darshaniiyo bahudhaa vicChinnaH kaa.ncano dhvajaH |
jagaama dharaNiim suuryo devataanaam iva aaj~nayaa || 4-28-23

23. bahudhaa vicChinnaH= severally, shattered; darshaniiyaH= seeable - good looking; saH kaancanaH dhvajaH= that, golden, flagstaff with flag; devataanaam aaj~nayaa= by god's, order - damnation; suuryaH iva= sun, as with; dharaNiim jagaama= to earth, went - fallen on earth.

That eye-pleasing golden flagstaff with flag is severally shattered and fell onto ground as if it is god-damned sun fallen on earth. [4-28-23]

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tam caturbhiH kharaH kruddho raamam gaatreSu maargaNaiH |
vivyaadha hR^idi marmaj~no maata.ngam iva tomaraiH || 4-28-24

24. kruddhaH= enraged [by fall of flag]; marma j~naH = crucial points, knower [or, knower of war tactics]; kharaH= Khara; tam raamam= at that, Rama; hR^idi= on chest; caturbhiH maargaNaiH= with four, arrows; maatangam tomaraiH iva= elephant, with lancets as if [one would prod]; gaatreSu= on limbs of Rama; vivyaadha= assaulted.

By that Khara is enraged, and as one who is aware of striking crucial parts/war tactics assaulted on the chest of Rama with four arrows, and even on other limbs, as one would prod an elephant with lancets. [4-28-24]

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sa raamo bahubhiH baaNaiH khara kaarmuka niHsR^itaiH |
viddho rudhira sik{}taa.ngo babhuuva ruSito bhR^isham || 4-28-25

25. saH raamaH= he, that Rama; khara kaarmuka niHsR^itaiH= from Khara's, bow, unloosened; bahubhiH baaNaiH= with various, arrows; viddhaH= when impacted; rudhira sikta angaH= with blood, drenched, limbs; bhR^isham ruSitaH babhuuva= highly, indignant, he became.

Impacted with various arrows unloosened from the bow of Khara, limbs of Rama are drenched in blood and he became highly indignant. [4-28-25]

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sa dhanur dhanvinaam shreSThaH pragR^ihya parama aahave |
mumoca parama iSvaasaH SaT sharaan abhilakSitaan || 4-28-26

26. parama aahave= in that great, war; dhanvinaam shreSThaH= among archers, ablest one; parama iSvaasaH= one who got great, bow; saH= he that Rama; dhanuH pragR^ihya= bow, on taking - on aiming; abhi lakSitaan= the arrow that have already targeted their targets - targeting pointedly; SaT sharaan mumoca= six, arrows, released.

On aiming his great bow that ablest one among archers, namely Rama, then in that war released six arrows targeting pointedly. [4-28-26]

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shirasi ekena baaNena dvaabhyaam baahvor atha aarpayat |
tribhiH candra ardha vak{}traiH ca vakSasi abhijaghaana ha || 4-28-27

27. ekena baaNena shirasi = only one, with arrow, on head; atha= next; dvaabhyaam baahvoH= with two, on hands; aarpayat= given, hit; tribhiH candra ardha vaktraiH ca= with three, moon, half, faced ones, also [crescent shaped arrows]; vakSasi abhijaghaana ha= on chest, toward, hit, indeed.

Rama indeed hit Khara's head with one arrow, with two his hands, and next with three crescent shaped arrows he hit his chest. [4-28-27]

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tataH pashcaat mahaatejaa naaraacaan bhaaskara upamaan |
jaghaana raakSasam kruddhaH trayodasha shilaa ashitaan || 4-28-28

28. tataH pashcaat= then, afterwards; mahaatejaa kruddhaH= great-resplendent Rama, infuriately; raakSasam jaghaana [jighaa.msu]= demon, to kill; bhaaskara upamaan= sun, similar to [in dazzle]; trayaH dasha naaraacaan= three, ten [thirteen,] iron arrows; shilaa ashitaan= on stone, grind - sharply whetted; [launched.]

Then afterwards that great-resplendent Rama wishing to eliminate the demon, infuriately launched thirteen iron arrows that are sharply whetted and similar to the dazzle of sun. [4-28-28]

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rathasya yugam ekena caturbhiH shabalaan hayaan |
SaSThena ca shiraH sa.mkhye cicCheda khara saaratheH || 4-28-29
tribhiH triveNuun balavaan dvaabhyaam akSam mahaabalaH |
dvaadashena tu baaNena kharasya sa sharam dhanuH || 4-28-30
Chittvaa vajra nikaashena raaghavaH prahasan iva |
trayodashena indra samo bibheda samare kharam || 4-28-31

29. samare= in combats; indra samaH= Indra, one who is equal to [Rama]; balavaan= mighty one; raaghavaH= Raghava; prahasan iva= laughing at [making a sport of,] as though; samkhye= in combat; ekena= with one [arrow]; asya rathasya= his [Khara's,] of chariot; yugam= yoke; and then; caturbhiH shabalaan [caturaH] hayaan= with four, dappled, [four] horses; SaSThena= with sixth [arrow]; khara saaratheH shiraH = Khara's, charioteer's, head; tribhiH triveNuum= with three [arrows,] three-pronged shaft [from yoke to body of chariot]; dvaabhyaam akSam= with two, the axle; cicCheda= fragmented [the chariot]; dvaa dashena tu baaNena= two, ten [twelve,] but, with arrows; kharasya sa sharam dhanuH [cicCheda] = Khara's, together with, arrow, bow; Chittvaa= on wrecking; mahaabalaH= great-mighty [Rama]; vajra nikaashena= thunderbolt, similar [with arrows]; trayodashena = with thirteenth arrow; kharam bibheda= Khara, is impaled.

That mighty Raghava who equals Indra in combats, smiling at the warfare of Khara, smashed the yoke of the chariot with one arrow; with four, four of the dappled horses; with the sixth, the head of the charioteer of Khara; with three, the three-pronged shaft from yoke to the base of chariot; with two the axels, thus that chariot is fragmented. Then, on wrecking Khara's bow on which an arrow is placed with the twelfth, that mighty one Rama impaled Khara with the thirteenth arrow that is similar to a thunderbolt. [4-28-29, 30, 31]

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prabhagna dhanvaa viratho hata ashvo hata saarathiH |
gadaa paaNiH avaplutya tasthau bhuumau kharaH tadaa || 4-28-32

32. tadaa= then; pra bhagna dhanvaa= one with utterly, shattered, bow; vi rathaH= one without, chariot; hata ashvaH hata saarathiH= with killed, horses, killed, charioteer; kharaH= Khara; gadaa paaNiH= mace, in hand - wielding it; ava plutya= hopped down; bhuumau= on ground; tasthau = stood fast.

With his bow utterly shattered, chariot fragmented, horses killed, and charioteer felled, that Khara then hopped down to ground from the dilapidated chariot wielding a mace, and stood fast. [4-28-32]

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tat karma raamasya mahaarathasya
sametya devaaH ca maharSayaH ca |
apuujayan praa.njalayaH prahR^iSTaaH
tadaa vimaana agra gataaH sametaaH || 4-28-33

33. devaaH ca maharSayaH ca= gods, also, great-sages, too; tadaa= then; sametaaH= assembling; vimaana agra gataaH = on aircrafts, tops, staying; sametyaH= coming together; pra hR^iSTaaH = highly, gladdened; praanjalayaH= with adjoined palms; mahaarathasya raamasya tat karma= great chariot-fighter, Rama's, that, deed; apuujayan= worshipped.

The gods as well as great-sages have then came together and assembled in heavens, and those assemblies that are aboard their aircrafts are highly gladdened at the exploit of the great chariot-fighter Rama, and they worshipped him with their adjoined palms. [4-28-33]

 

iti vaalmiiki raamaayaNe aadi kaavye araNya kaaNDe aSTa vi.mshaH sargaH

Thus, this is the 28th chapter in Aranya Kanda of Valmiki Ramayana, the First Epic poem of India.


Verse Locator for Book III : Aranya Kanda - The Forest Trek : Chapter 28

 

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Sarga 28 in English Prose

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2002, Desiraju Hanumanta Rao [Revised : April 04]