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GAJA GAURI

Maharashtra Film Company (1926)

Director: Baburao Painter

Cast: Kamla Devi, Anasuya, Gulab, Balasaheb Yadav, V. Shantaram, Z. Pawar.

 

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Plot: A story from the Mahabharata, leading up to the feud between the Kauravas and the Pandavas.

Gandhari, the mother of the Kauravas, thought of performing a ceremony known as the Gaja Gauri Vratha which consisted of distributing gifts to relatives of equal status. To do  this she would be riding an elephant, which was created out of mud by her sons.

 

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Gandhari arrived at the home of Kunti, the mother of the sons of Pandu, and gave her a gift, announcing that if she cared for her reputation she’d do the same.

Kunti was worried that her sons would not be able to build such a fine elephant as Gandhari had ridden, but her second son Bhim began collecting mounds of earth in order to make the animal.

 

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Her third son Arjun, seeing this, decided Bhim’s task was of no use, and that their mother should ride the elephant of Lord Indra, his father. He writes a letter to his father, attaches it to an arrow, and shoots it into the sky.

 

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Indra reads the note and lets his son know that if he wants the elephant, Airawata, he must arrange for its transport to earth.

Arjun builds a ladder of arrows reaching from the earth to heaven which Bhim then climbs, arriving at Indra’s court to demand the elephant.

 

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He is met by several gods and is told he may take the rather ferocious elephant away…if he can. Bhim is forced to wrestle the animal, as it is not wanting to follow along, and when he manages to overpower the beast, it turns into a lamb which he ties to a mace and brings to Indra. Indra tells the insolent Bhim that he should kindly untie the creature and take it to earth.

 

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When Bhim brings Airawata, now turned back into an elephant, to earth, he gives it to his mother who rides it to the house of Gandhari to return the gift as Ghandhari had suggested.

 

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