A truly heart touching story — Not without my sister Draupadi!
Draupadi and Drishtadyumna are twin siblings born out of a fire sacrifice. The fire sacrifice is performed by Drupad with a desire to get a son who will take a revenge of his insult by killing his rival — Drona. Draupadi and Drishtadyumna can be seen as masculine and feminine forms to take revenge desired by Drupad. A birth of Draupadi and Drishtadyumna out of the same fire sacrifice also manifests a fact that the nature is impartial about a gender. There is no gender discrimination in a natural course of taking a shape of desire. Initially, Drupad does not agree to accept feminine form of instrument to fulfill his desire; and therefore, he simply rejects Draupadi. Drupad does not believe that a girl can take a revenge of his insult or can play any role in the whole scheme. However, the lives of Draupadi and Drishtadyumna are anecdotes to set an example what can be achieved together. It is impossible for Drishtadyumna to fulfill his destiny without Draupadi being there.
Being born out of fire, Draupadi and Drishtadyumna personify a passion and power. However because of a difference in their genders, these same set of characteristics are viewed differently in the male dominant society. A woman should not be ‘passionate’; her passion for life is generally seen negatively. She is supposed to be ‘modest’ because her path of passion may come as hindrance in a path of a ‘man’. Similarly wielding a power by a woman is intolerable. A woman is never supposed to insert any power on a ‘man’. A characteristic of being powerful is always associated to a ‘man’ and a woman is supposed to be delicate. So while Drishtadyumna is praised for being passionate and powerful; Draupadi is being mocked for the same things. These innocent siblings as the kids fail to understand why they should be treated differently. Draupadi struggles to understand why something that is right for Drishtadyumna is wrong for her. But indifferent to the world of mannerism, these siblings share everything among themselves. This gives Draupadi a fair chance to get what is forbidden for her. This leads to a true development of her character, traversing the boundaries set due to gender discrimination. This comes as a first lesson for these sibling — not to fear rejection and to be comfortable being themselves.
The lives of Draupadi and Drishtadyumna are closely associated with each other. Drishtadyumna gets a chance to achieve a goal of his life in a war for which his sister is seen as ‘a cause’. In turn, Draupadi receives an immense support from her maiden house because of Drishtadyumna. In all those years of distress and pains Draupadi keeps on provoking her husbands in the proud words –“If you cannot take the desired revenge of my humiliation — my brother will do it for me!” Getting such kind of maiden support is something unusual for a married woman. This distinguishes Draupadi from other female characters of her époque. Her mother-in-law Kunti does not at all receive support of her maiden house; and maiden support to Gandhari is misleading in nature. This strong maiden support to Draupadi in a good faith places her in better position of power. This also shows an importance of maiden house support in a woman’s life. Nothing much has changed even in today’s world — if a woman wants to achieve something, a maiden support is ’must’ for her.
Drishtadyumna shares cordial relationship with Draupadi’s husbands. He is an admirer of the warrior skills of Arjun. He always tries to learn better skill sets from him. This helps Drishtadyumna to grow into a character of the better warrior. Draupadi, Drishtadyumna and Arjun together form an emotional triangle; where each angle is connected to other angle through a dotted line of an admiration. Drishtadyumna shares a quality of assertiveness with Draupadi; which Pandava grossly lack. Therefore, Drishtadyumna is appointed as a commander of Pandava’s army. Whilst Draupadi has lead the lives of Pandava to bring them to the path of prosperity and power, her brother has lead Pandava army to lead the path of success in the great war. The warrior instincts and pro-activeness of Draupadi and Drishtadyumna are really incomparable. Drishtadyumna can be seen as male counterpart of Draupadi’s character; and therefore he has been carefully chosen as a commander by Krishna. While Draupadi is a queen on the chess board of an entire story of Mahabharata, Drishtadyumna is a king of Kurukshetra chapter. It can be contended that though Drishtadyumna has fought a war fiercely at physical level; Draupadi has equally fought this war fiercely at emotional level.
The end of Great War of Kurukshetra, led by Drishtadyumna as a Commander General of Pandava army, is really tragic in nature. It brings out the victory to Pandava side and depicts that moral prevails over evil. However, on the other side, it brings out a great personal loss to Draupadi. Ashvatthama kills Drishtadyumna brutally on the last night and makes a taste of success bitter for Draupadi. Draupadi has to undergo a large amount of emotional turmoil that a twin brother of her, who has supported her throughout her life, has to depart from her when a path of success and power is seen ahead. But Draupadi overcomes this tough emotional turmoil and proves herself as a greater warrior at emotional level. Proving herself as a well-deserved queen, Draupadi pays her tribute to her brother who has really strived hard to bring out a success and power in Draupadi’s life.