The story of Arjuna abducting Subhadra, rather Subhadra abducting Arjuna is quite famous in Mahabharat. However, many do not know that their son Abhimanyu continued the trend in the next generation. This time around the same two people became the ultimate victims – Balram and Duryodhana. The reason? Well, while the girl Vatsala (Sashirekha) who was abducted from her marriage mandap was Balram’s daughter, her chosen groom by Balram was Duryodhana’s son – Laxman Kumara.
This story isn’t mentioned in Mahabharat but finds place in Andhra’s folklore. Here it goes……
Sasirekha, the daughter of Balram and his wife Revati is betrothed to Abhimanyu, son of Arjuna and Subhadra. However, after the Pandavas lose Indraprastha in the dice game and are in exile, Balram’s wife is worried about the future of their daughter. She says, “Pandavas have no kingdom left with them, how can we marry our daughter to Abhimanyu as he is just a commoner now, and not a prince. ” Balram thinks about it and so he decides to give his daughter’s hand to his disciple’s (Duryodhana) son Laxmankumara.
This agitates a helpless Subhadra who always saw Vatsala as her daughter-in-law. She tries to intervene but nothing works. Abhimanyu isn’t happy to see her mother sad and gloomy, when she is already suffering the pain of separation from her husband. He decides to take the help of his another Uncle – Krishna. Krishna, shares his inability to control the situation but gives him a clue.
Meanwhile, Subhadra isn’t very happy about the sudden developments in her Dwarka house and decides to leave in search of her husband in the forest. Abhimanyu, then along with his mother come across the same forest where Ghatotkacha, His cousin brother (uncle Bheem’s son from a rakshasi mother Hidimba) is staying as a ruler.
When Abhimanyu Meets Ghatotkacha
The meeting of the two is strange. The two equally strong people come face to face each other and both, fight against each other. Finally, Ghatatokacha collapses. His mother Hidimba on hearing his voice reaches on the spot and cries aloud, “O the son of Bheemsena.” Hearing this, both Abhimanyu and Subhadra are shocked.
Subhadra then introduces herself as Krishna’s sister and Arjuna’s wife. She then asks her relation with Bheem. Hidimiba tells her the entire story. Hidimba later asks Subhadra what is she doing in the forest, to which Subhadra narrates her sad story.
Meanwhile, Ghatotkacha regains his consciousness and is happy to realize that the person who defeated him is his own brother. Abhimanyu realizes that Ghatotkacha is the hint that his uncle Krishna gave him when he went to ask his help.
The Abducting Plan
Hearing Abhimanyu’s plight Ghatotkacha is disgusted because Balram wants to marry his daughter to a person who is the real cause of Pandavas’ pain. He then decides to help his first cousin Abhimanyu by any means. Meanwhile, there are preparations going on for the Vatsala-Laxmankumara wedding.
Ghatotkacha in disguise reaches the venue. He not just scares the hell out of Laxman Kumara (who vows not to marry ever) but even abducts the bride and takes her to the forest. Vatsala marries Abhimanyu. It is said that both, Vatsala and Abhimanyu had feelings for each other.
However, when Duryodhana comes to know that Vatsala married Abhimanyu, he is so angry that we vows to take a revenge. Balram, however, accepts the marriage without much apprehensions. Later, after the Agyatvas gets over, Abhimanyu marries Uttara, which everybody is aware of…
Laxman Kumara was killed by Abhimanyu on the 13th day of Kurukshetra war