When Drona asked thus, Krishna was terribly perturbed. "If
Yudhishthira fails us now and shrinks from uttering an untruth, we are lost. Drona's
Brahmastra is of unquenchable potency and the Pandavas will be destroyed," are said.
And Yudhishthira himself stood trembling in horror of what he was about
to do, but within him also was the desire to win. "Let it be my sin," he said to
himself and hardened his heart, and said aloud: "Yes, it is true that Aswatthama has
But, as he was saying it, he felt again the disgrace of it and added in
a low and tremulous voice, "Aswatthama, the elephant" words which were however
drowned in the din and were not heard by Drona.
"O king, thus was a great sin committed," said Sanjaya to the
blind Dhritarashtra, while relating the events of the battle to him.
When the words of untruth came out of Yudhishthira's mouth, the wheels
of his chariot, which until then always stood and moved four inches above the ground and
never touched it at once came down and touched the earth.