Amatya Rakshasa is introduced in Chakravartin Ashoka Samrat to take revenge against Chanakya, his old rival. He is so adamant to teach Chanakya a lesson for his betrayal, that he has joined the Unanis (Greek). However, what he calls a betrayal was rather a strategy of Chandragupta Maurya and Chanakya combined.
Now if you are wondering who is he? Why would he have issues with Chanakya and what is his motive? Here we give you his story, facts, and his connections with Chanakya, along with the story of the betrayal.
Amatya Rakshas Was the Last Minister of the Nanda Empire
The rulers of Magadh prior to the Mauryan era had strange genes in them – They slaughtered their father to get on to the throne. It started with Ajatshatru who killed his father Bimbisara who ruled for 52 years, and continued until the last Nanda ruler Dhana Nanda who was dethroned by Chandragupta Maurya with the intelligence of Chanakya.
According to the legends, this Nanda king who was a son of his father’s concubine with his villainous determination and grit could dethrone his father by slaying him. He had an inbuilt prejudice mind against people of the higher rank and so he insulted Chanakya, a Brahmin who came from Taxila to Magadh to seek this ruler’s help against the Greeks. However, no king could stay without an Amatya, and so Rakshasa was a Amatya in the Nanda Empire, perhaps the last.
Amatya Rakshasa Was Very Cunning and Clever
Master of hatching conspiracies, Rakshas never wanted to come in front to carry out his own plots. He always used other people to carry out his vicious plans. According to BK Chaturvedi, Rakshasa played an important role in deteriorating the Nanda Kingdom, where he not just poisoned the king’s mind, but also played internal politics, and made plans to execute other ministers. Nevertheless, he was an able minister of the Nanda King and was unconditionally loyal to him.
Now the story of Chanakya’s Betrayal…Only to Save Chandragupta Maurya from Getting Killed by Rakshasa
…Chandragupta Maurya succeeded in defeating Dhana Nanda, The Nanda king – making his minister Amatya Rakshasa helpless. However, he was not the one who could sit peacefully with this defeat. So, he took a vow to avenge the murder of his master by killing Chandragupta Maurya.
Farsighted Chanakya knew Rakshasha’s intention and so he prepares and defeats Rakshasa in his own plan..
Amatya Rakshasa and His Plan to Kill Chandra Gupta Maurya
Once Parvataka (or Parvateshwar) nephew of Porus, Chanakya and Chandra Gupta Maurya won the entire Nanda Empire, the Nanda empire was divided into two – one was with Parvataka and the other with Chandragupta. However, when Parvataka died due to poisoning by a vishkanya, Malayaketu his son in the company of Rakshasa demanded all the territories of the Nanda kingdom. This was the perfect opportunity for Rakshasa to get his revenge against Maurya and Chanakya who was trying his best to kill Chandragupta, but failed miserably only because of Chanakya.
Chandragupta and Chanakya’s Game Plan to Defeat Rakshasa
In order to outsmart Rakshasa in his own game, Chandragupta and Chanakya forged a rift between them. Next, Chandragupta removed Chanakya from his post for pretense – declaring Amatya Rakshasa a better minister than Chanakya. Simultaneously, the drama went on in Malayaketu’s court where Chanakya’s agent turned Malayaketu against Rakshasa by telling him how Rakshasa will become a minister in Chandragupta’s court by replacing Chanakya. The gupt char of Chanakya did their job so well that they became successful in creating an actual rift between the king Malayaketu and his aid Rakshasa.
In addition, this super intelligent force of Chanakya’s spies became successful in fooling the king by making him believe that 5 of his most trusted allies were on the verge of joining Chandragupta. This agitated Malayaketu so much that he ordered the killings of these allies.
Rakshasa Then Becomes Chandragupta MAURYA’s Prime Minister
Chandragupta and Chanakya’s plan succeeds in weakening the king Malayaketu. The king not only becomes weak but also isolated with Chanakya’s strategy. Rakshasa who becomes Chandragupta Maurya’s Prime Minister realizes that this was a ploy, masterminded by none other than the Chanakya.
By: Deepti Verma