Sunday, 23 August 2015

298. Vibhishana learnt the arrangements made by Ravana.

          Meanwhile, Rama, Sugreeva the sovereign of vanaras, Hanuman the son of Vayu, Jambavan the king of the Bears, Vibhishana the rakshash, Angada the son of Vali, Lakshmana, Sushena along with his kinsfolk, Mainda, Dvivida, Gaja, Gavaksha, Kumuda, Nala and Panasa, all having reached the enemy's territory, assembled to discuss the next course of action. Rama addressed them in general "I Observe that this city of Lanka, ruled by Ravana, appears to be impregnable even to the immortal devdhas together with asuras, the uragas (serpent rakshashas) or Gandharvas. Ravana, the lord of rakshashas seems to be staying in the city always,  except  for occasional escapades like the abduction of Seetha. Think of the ways and means for the success of our expedition."
         Vibhishana the younger brother of Ravana said "My pals and counselors Anala, Panasa, Sampati and Pramati, assuming the form of birds, visited the city of Lanka clandestinely and collected a good lot of useful info.
         "O, Rama! The arrangements made by Ravana for the defence of this city have been collected by them. The very strong Prashata is made responsible for the defense of the eastern gate. Mahaparshva and Mahodara of mighty prowess are to defend the southern gate. Indragit, the son of Ravana will be guarding the western gate along with many rakshashas armed with harpoons, swords, bows, spears and hammers together with warriors furnished with weapons of various kinds. Ravana, knower of magical formulas, will himself be at the northern gate, along with several thousands of rakshashas holding various weapons in their hands.
         "Virupaksha along with a mighty army carrying spears, clubs and bows along with many other rakshashas, occupies the center of the fort. The strength of the elephants and chariots is around ten thousand each, the cavalry twenty thousand and there are more than a crore foot soldiers.
        "O, Rama! When Ravana attacked Kubera, sixty lacs of rakshashas sallied forth with him. All of them were akin to the evil-minded Ravana in prowess, in strength, in courage and in pride. Please don't be indignant  about this information. I am not trying to scare you, but only informing you. You are indeed capable of overpowering even suras."
        After hearing Vibhishana Rama said "I have some experience in the deployment of forces against adversaries in battles. At the eastern gate of Lanka, Nila that lion among vanaras, surrounded by many valiant vanaras, will oppose Prahasta. At the southern gate, Angada the son of Vali, surrounded by his mighty army, will oppose Mahaparshva and Mahodara. Hanuman that son Vayu and of inscrutable spirit, surrounded by a multitude of vanaras, will enter the City through the western gate.
         "I myself am determined to oppose that wicked rakshash, who, armed with the boons he has received, enjoys oppressing all, including the magnanimous sages. With the aid of Lakshmana, I shall forcibly enter the northern gate where Ravana is stationed along with his army.
        "The mighty Sugreeva, the valiant Jambavan, the king of bears and Vibhishana, the younger brother of the Lord of rakshashas will occupy the central position of the army. Vanaras should not assume human form in the battle, for, in the army of vanaras, this vanara-shape should serve as a sign of recognition among us. Seven of us namely I, my brother Lakshmana, who is full of valour, my friend Vibhishana and his four companions will attack the foe in our normal form."

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