Indrajit Meghanada – Valmiki Ramayana

IndrajitIndrajit was son of Ravana and his wife Mandodari. He was named “Meghanada” because his birth cry gave the impression of thunder. He defeated Indra, the king of the Devas, following which he came to be known as ‘Indrajit’.

At a very young age, Meghanada possessed a number of supreme heavenly weapons, including Brahmastra, Pashupatastra, and Vaishnavastra, under the guidance of Shukra, the guru of the daityas (demons). He was married to Sulochana, the daughter of the King of the Serpents Shesha Naga.

Sulochana (also called Prameela) came from the nagas and was daughter of Adishesha, who was the incarnation of Lakshmana as stated by some sects. When Meghanada got victory over Indra, he was granted with a Brahmastra. It is actually believed that Brahmastra was a great weapon having tremendous power and when it left the bow it could beat any arrow and kill anyone at wish.

Brahma’s Boon to Indrajit

During the Devasura SangRamm (the fight amongst the devas and the asuras), he freed his father from the shackles of Indra. Then he turned the tables on Indra, tying him up and mounting him onto his celestial chariot.

At this point, Brahma stepped in and requested him to free Indra. Meghnada obliged, and was allowed an opportunity to ask for a boon from Brahma. Meghanada asked for immortality, but Brahma pointed out that complete immortality was against the law of the nature. As an alternative, he was then given another boon: he would never be won over in any battle, until his Yagna (fire-worship) of his native goddess Nikumbala was disturbed and destroyed. On the completion of the Yagna, a supreme heavenly chariot would appear, boarding which, he would become invincible in any battle. But Brahma also advised him that whosoever would ruin this yagna would most likely also eliminate him. It was Brahma who gave him the name Indrajit (“the conqueror of Indra”).

Indrajit – Battle against Ram and Lakshmana

Meghanada joined the battle when all his brothers had been killed by Rama and his army. His father, Ravana, had been humiliated in the battle by Rama, and his paternal uncle Kumbhakarna had been killed by Ram.

He had access to all the heavenly weapons like Brahmastra, Pashupatastra etc. Meghanada even bound Ram and Lakshman with the ‘Nagpash‘ (serpent spell). The king of birds Garuda subsequently freed Ram and Lakshman from the Nagpash by killing the serpen

He shot Brahmastra to kill Lakshmana but when he came to know that Lakhsman had survived again, he went to his native deity’s secret temple to complete the yagna which would lead him to be invincible. Vibhishana, Indrajit’s paternal uncle who left Ravana to join Ram in the name of truth and justice, discovered his nephews program through his spies and informed Lord Ram. Lakshman and Vibhisan took the opportunity to face Meghanada in the “Yagnaagaar”, where he would not touch any weapons. He fought Lakshman with the utensils of the yagna and even was able to get away from there. But before Indrajit could get armed Lakshman chopped his head off his body in a brutal beheading with the Aindrastra. Upon his death his wife Sulochana became Sati on his funeral pyre.

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