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Was Draupadi in love with Karna? January 7, 2014

Posted by Karan in Uncategorized.
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Mythology is the flavour of the season, and after reading the terrific “Palace of Illusions”, I went about looking for the answer to this question.

Predictably, my two sources were Google and elders in the family- the elders had absolutely no clue about this question. Google, however, through up a lot of interesting anecdotes and one of them is worth looking at:

According to a legend from Mahabharata, during the thirteenth year of the exile of the Pandavas, Draupadi saw a ripe jambul, roseapple, hanging from a tree. She plucked it to have it. No sooner had she done this, Krishna came from somewhere and stopped her from eating it. According to Krishna, the ripe fruit was supposed to be the fruit with which a sage was supposed to break his twelve-year fast. Not finding the fruit at its place, could earn the wrath of the sage, resulting in more trouble for the Pandavas and her. Draupadi begged of Krishna to help her out of this impending problem.
Krishna, then said that the fruit could be put back at its original place, only by someone who holds no secrets. Draupadi had only one option and to confess some guilt. Seeing no way out, Draupadi walked up her husband’s and confessed to them, that though she was a chaste woman and loved all the five husbands, there was someone else that she longed for. She always had loved and respected Karna, the arch-enemy of the Pandavas. This was a shock to all the husbands, but none said anything. Having confessed, she went and put the fruit back on the branch of the tree and all was well.

Fascinating, isn’t it? Apparently, this is mentioned in quite a few folk editions of the Mahabharata. The book mentions the longing which they had for each other as being mutual; but it was something which did not fructify itself due to various reasons. The landmark events in their relationship, of course were Karna being called “suta-putra” by Draupadi and not being allowed to contest the Swayamvar and the insult of Draupadi by Karna in Yudhisthira’s court. However, there have always been undercurrents between the two- and the same has been beautifully brought out in the book.

So what do you guys think about this? I am curious to hear of more opinions and views on this



1. rahul - January 7, 2014

Don’t know about Draupadi but I love Karna 😛

Aakanksha - January 7, 2014

No option of upvoting the above comment 😀

Karan - January 8, 2014

LOL. He is one fascinating character, definitely

2. Ganesh - January 7, 2014

I have a seen the same quote being depicted in a mythological telugu movie, not sure if it was mutual, but Draupadi loved Karna

Karan - January 8, 2014

Apparently, this whole idea also comes about from the Tam version of Mahabharata

3. tanmay2904 - January 7, 2014

I haven’t read The Doors of Perception. I also have little knowledge of Mahabharata. Its so comlex; Its like Game of Thrones Level 10 😀

But I did came upon this once:


4. sashidhar - January 7, 2014

Draupadi’s father was defeated and humilated by Dronacharya. He conducted a ritual and the gods gave him a daughter and said that she would usher in the destruction of Hastinapur.

The other interesting part is that the gods had her fate sealed in the fact that she would love AND marry someone who had high moral values, archery, physical strength, handsome and intelligent. Draupadi always thought arjuna was the one with all these qualities. However, she realized that the Pandavas collectively had these values. And through different anecdotes, Draupadi came to realize that Karna in fact had all the qualities.

On top of it Arjuna feels bad that he has to share Draupadi with his brothers and soon starts spending more time with his second wife (mother of Abhimanyu). All these events precipitate in Draupadi falling in love with Karna.

As is usual in Hindu mythology, the gods’ prophecies came true. She single handedly created a huge rift b/w pandavas and kauravas to ensure a war; she fell in love in karna (had all five qualities) AND married pandavas (who collectively had all five qualities).

There is a certain quora answer that talks a lot about it. Not able to find it right now though.

sashidhar - January 7, 2014

Refer to Tanmay’s comment for the quora question I was talking about.

Karan - January 8, 2014

Yeah the quora article is interesting. It talks about the fact that Draupadi believes that she would not have been humiliated if she was with Karna and not with the Pandavas. The answer is quite fascinating

5. Priyadarshini - August 3, 2014

i love Karna…..he is a great warrior….anyone can fall in love with him

6. Manoj r gulalkai - August 9, 2014

Yes even I heard it somewhere, but will u please tell where is it mentioned? I mean which versions of Mahabharat?

7. Diya - September 12, 2014

As far as I know this is just a folk tale, made for the purpose of an interesting story.
None of the mahabharat versions that I have read mention any thing abt karna & draupati, not the original vyas mahabharat for sure!
& honestly it makes no sense, she rejected him. That’s a fact as very version of mahabharat states tht, so I don’t think thr was anything btw thm. Also karna was married and as far as I know happily married. So honestly this makes an interesting read but it’s not true!

8. Thitherwards (@Thitherwardz) - March 2, 2016

There are many shrines for Goddess Draupadi, spread in Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. One of the shrines, where She is a Grama-Devatha and Kula-Devatha to many, is located in one of the small villages of Tamil Nadu.

The village is named KONDAL, Mayiladuthurai Taluk, Nagapattinam District, Nidur P.O, Tamil Nadu.

There are more details about Goddess and way to the shrine at:


Draupadi Amman Thunai

May Her blessing be always on you all!!

9. Thitherwards (@Thitherwardz) - March 16, 2016

Different People, Different Thoughts. One cannot know who their biological mother and/ father is until & unless told by her. My point is we cannot ignore or object our

Puranas, unless and until we have any solid proofs/ points to defend our statements. Personal opinions/ assumptions would mostly be baseless and cannot be trusted up on or considered for further arguments.

Nevertheless, if you got time, patience and willingness to know about ‘Draupadi’, you can visit my blog and comment.


Draupadi Amman Thunai – May you all be BLESSED by HER grace!!

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