RamaayaN by Valmiki 27
Leave Sita away in jungle and come back
Information system of Ayodhya, ruled by Ram, was so well organized that he could know every activity, rumor or talk going on in his whole empire.
Vijay, Madhumatta, Kashyapa, Mangala, Kula, Suraj, Kaliya, Bhadra, Dantavakra and Sugandha were his main informers whom he treated as his friends.
They were asked to inform him about every good or bad activity going on in the state as well as what people talked about him.
One day Ram found Bhadra silent and hesitant about communicating him something. Ram encouraged him to come out with the truth, he was hesitant to disclose before him:”Bhadra tell me frankly about the truths going on in the town and in my kingdom as a whole. What people talk of me, Sita, Laxman, Bharat and Shtrughna? Bhadra ! Tell me even if something is unpleasant up to any extent. What are the good or ill words the citizens speak? It will help me in maintaining good things and refraining from bad actions.”
These words of Ram gave courage to Bhadra to speak out the harsh truth he was hiding. He said; “O greatest among kings! Listen, what is talked about you on the crossroads, in the markets, on the streets, in the forests and in the groves. People talk very high of you for constructing a bridge across the ocean. It was never thought or done by anybody before you. They feel proud of killing ten-headed mighty king of Lanka with his whole army by you with the help of monkeys and bears…but, a section of people of your kingdom don’t appreciate Sita accepted by you and brought back to Ayodhya. They say that the woman, who was abducted by Ravan and carried to Lanka in his lap and who was kept months together in Ashoka grove among demons, why Ram did not censor her. They say such conduct of a king will affect their life adversely. Even such women of their houses will claim to remain a part of their family even after committing some wrong act. Since, whatever a king does, subjects follow them as precedence.”
These words disturbed Ram deeply. He sent all informers back immediately. He went inside the room and kept on sitting for quite some time facing the thunders roaring deep within and shaking him badly.
After a few minutes, he sent messengers to call all his brothers immediately.
Ram had never done so before. When his brothers got his message they left immediately to see him. After some time their chariots arrived at the door of the castle. They went inside where Ram was sitting. Ram welcomed all his brothers and offered them seats around him. After a few seconds of silence, he spoke to them:’ O guardians of the citizens of the kingdom! You constitute all my passions and you are nothing less than my life. I am looking after the kingdom carved by you. You have followed the scriptures with your matured intellect.”
"Today I have come to know such an unexpected thing which has disturbed me badly which I want to share with you all. Our citizens are talking ill of Sita. They don’t appreciate Sita brought back here who was carried away by Ravan in his lap to Lanka .I have told you that Sita was accepted by me after she proved her chastity by entering into the fire and coming out of it safely.”
“But, a section of citizens don’t approve Sita living with me. They talk ill of her and the rumor running around is causing infamy to me and my family. Thus I have decided to send Sita in jungle forever. I cannot wear the infamy of linage of Raghu.”
Ram took a disturbed pause, looked at Laxman and told him firmly: “Brother Laxman! You have carried on many difficult jobs successfully in the jungle. Sita knows you better. If you take her to the jungle, she will have no any doubt. Sita is pregnant. A few days back she desired to go to jungle for a change with me for some days. This is the proper occasion to use her request. You go to Sita and tell her that I have sent you to take her to jungle for a change as I have no time to leave Ayodhya. These words will convince her. You take Sita to the other side of Ganga and leave her near the hermitage of Brahmrshi Valmiki and come back.”
His brothers were about to speak but Ram stopped them and said “this is my final decision. I have decided to not to keep Sita with me in the palace. She will go out from here without any doubt and my desire will be brought to action without any delay.”
This decision of Ram silenced all his brothers. They knew it well that Ram does not change his decisions. However, their faces showed that they were not happy with this decision of his brother. Laxman was left with no any option. He left immediately to meet Sita. His other bothers went inside the castle leaving Ram alone as he desired.
Laxman met Sita and told her what Ram had asked him to do.
Sita was happy to know that Ram sincerely cared her desire to go to jungle for a change. She immediately prepared to leave with Laxman.
Laxman covered half of the way on chariot with Sita. Reaching near the bank of Ganga he took a boat and crossed the river.
Laxman remained heavily silent all the way. He was passing through thousands and thousands of thunders within. He controlled himself coercively. But at the moment he reached to the other side of Ganga, He started weeping loudly like a child. He fell down at the feet of Sita.
Sita was shocked to see Laxman weeping and crying like a little child and lying down before her. The behavior of Laxman was most unexpected for her. She had seen mighty Laxman as an obedient brother of Ram as well as an angry young man, who never tolerated anything going wrong in his presence. She was fully aware of the fact that there was nothing wrong in the family. Everybody was comfortable there. Then, what can be wrong with him? Sita started analyzing. Have I done something wrong to him?
Sita asked Laxman: “brother! Have I done something wrong to you? If it has happened from me by mistake ever, I beg your pardon.”
This question brought Laxman back to his senses and he spoke “no …no ...never... but you have been made prey of injustice for no any fault of yours.”
Saying this Laxman narrated everything for what she was sent here in the jungle.
For a while Sita could not understand what Laxman was saying. If it is true what Laxman was saying, then it is a case of deception. She never thought that Ram, who presents himself as a symbol of higher values and righteousness, will behave in this deceptive manner! Can he be so mean, almost like Ravan!
For others administration of Ram might be a glorious ‘Ram-Rajya’ but for me it was worst than ‘Raavan-Rajya’.
Ravan never misbehaved with me in Lanka, but Ram compelled me to enter into the fire’
I was pure when he slept with me and pushed me on the way to motherhood and now I am impure because a section of people talk ill of me?
Ram, as a husband, should have protected me in public and have told them about what had happened when I was back from Lanka, but he cared more for his own infamy, not of me.
Ram is no more other than an ordinary cruel husband who beats his wife, insults her in various ways and finally kills her.
Even if I am alive, I am not more than a breathing dead body.
Ram always carried a dark corner in his mind where I was kept as a doubtful prisoner. He never believed me. He was always waiting for an excuse to leave me up, even after he tried to burn me down in the ire in the presence o crores of monkeys and others.
I am sorry to say, he behaved with me like a mischievous fellow. He deceitfully sent me to the jungle with you Laxman!
If he had told me frankly about his option after he heard about people who talked against me, I certainly have left the palace immediately and my respect for him would have been intact , but the way he played his card against me , amounts to be nothing , but meanness.
I am happy that I am going to deliver my child in a free atmosphere, not in a place where I was always followed by doubts.
I don’t blame anybody for what I have faced in my life. Destiny must have some aim and intentions in creating me and making me pass through such odd adversities.”
Saying this much, Sita became wordless. Her dry, empty and widely opened eyes looked to be stuck with the sky.
Flowing Ganga stopped for a while, blowing wind had a little pause, chirping of birds stopped, jungle carried heavy silence around and Sita lost the feeling of palpitation which carries life in every living being…
(Inspired by Valmiki)