by Hari Prasad Shastri | 1952 | 527,382 words | ISBN-10: 9333119590 | ISBN-13: 9789333119597
This page is entitled “prince bharata decides to go to the forest and bring back his brother” and represents Chapter 79 of the Ayodhya-kanda of the Ramayana (English translation by Hari Prasad Shastri). The Ramayana narrates the legend of Rama and Sita and her abduction by Ravana, the king of Lanka. It contains 24,000 verses divided into seven sections [viz., Ayodhya-kanda].
Early on the fourteenth day, the king’s ministers being assembled, thus addressed Prince Bharata: “Our Venerable Sovereign, King Dasaratha, having sent his eldest son, Shri Rama and the mighty Prince Lakshmana, into exile, has, himself, joined the circle of the gods. You are to-day our Lord, O Mighty Prince. The kingdom is now rulerless and the king bequeathed it to you, it is not improper for you, therefore, to ascend the throne, nor will any censure you on this account.
O Prince of the House of Raghu, all the articles for your coronation are made ready; your relatives, counsellors and ministers and the citizens look to you. O Great Prince, accept the kingdom of your paternal ancestors and cause thyself to be installed and protect us all.”
The Speaker of Truth, the illustrious Bharata, hearing these excellent words, reverently circumambulating the articles designed for the coronation ceremony, replied to those who thus addressed him: “Hear, O My People, it is known to you that according to the tradition of our Royal House the throne is inherited by the eldest son of the deceased sovereign; it is, therefore, improper for you to make this request to me. Shri Rama is my elder brother and, therefore, should be king. I shall enter the forest and reside there during fourteen years in his stead. Now order my whole army to hold itself in readiness, I will go to the forest and bring my brother back, taking with me all the articles necessary for his installation. Rama will there be proclaimed king! I will restore him like the holy fire which is brought to the place of sacrifice. I will never suffer the ambitions of Queen Kaikeyi to be fulfilled. I will enter the forest, hard to penetrate, and shall make Rama king. Let the rough and uneven roads at once be repaired by skilled artisans; let them be followed by mechanics and labourers.”
The people were gratified to hear the auspicious words of the prince and replied: “O Prince, may the Goddess of Prosperity ever abide with you! Desirous of making Rama our king, your words are timely.”
Then all present experienced great joy and shed tears of delight. The happy courtiers, ministers and servants spoke cheerfully, saying: “O Chief of Men, at your command we are summoning the workmen to prepare the way.”