Karna, the great warrior was supreme human being, yet people wonder why he did not get his due. Following story will help in understanding this.
Death of Karna
As Arjuna was in possession of Gandiva, Karna was also in possession of an equally strong bow called Vijaya. It was said that the person having this weapon could not be defeated in battle field. Then how did Karna die?
Parshurama blessed Karna with the Vijaya along with other celestial weapons. Karna used the Vijaya bow only once in his life, on the 17th day Kurukshetra war, when he was fighting against Arjuna (who was using the Gandiva).
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Karna was also known by the name Vijaydhari meaning ‘wielder of the Vijaya bow‘.
Knowing Karna’s might, Krishna on the 17th day warned Arjuna, called Karna that he can even defeat him if Arjuna did not fight with full vigour.
With this bow Karna macthed Arjuna on the 17th day of the Kurukshetra war. Karna cut the strings of Arjuna bow many times but Arjuna could not do any harm to Karna. Realizing that Karna with the Vijaya bow is superior to Arjuna, Lord Krishna advised him to kill unarmed Karna against the rules of engagement of the war, who had relinquished his bow and was busy trying to lift his sunken chariot wheel.
Arjuna killing Karna
The story of Vijaya bow
Vijaya or Vijaya Dhanush was said to give sure victory to the possessor. Parshuram gave Vijaya to his student Karna, who was a great archer, making him virtually invincible. Lord Krishna advised Arjuna to kill Karna knowing that Karna was impossible to defeat with this weapon in his possession.
Karna – the Vijayadhari
The bow Vijaya was specially made by Vishwakarma for Lord Shiva to destroy the city of Tripura built by sons of Tarakasura. Lord Shiva destroyed Tripura by firing Pashupatastra from Vijaya.
Later, Lord Siva gave this bow for safekeeping to Lord Indra, who frequently wielded the bow in his fights with the Asuras. The Asuras feared the bow due to its destructive abilities.
Lord Shiva instructed Indra to give the bow to Parshuram for the task of killing all the kshatriyas in the world. With this bow, Parshuram killed all kshatriyas in the world 21 times.
From Parshuram, it came to Karna.
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