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Karnataka 1st PUC Sanskrit Textbook Answers Shevadhi Chapter 10 सन्मित्रम्
सन्मित्रम् Questions and Answers, Notes, Summary
सन्मित्रम् Summary in Kannada
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The present extract is taken from Samskrita Samanya Jnanam’, a collection of stories. ‘A learned man is respected everywhere for his scholarship’ is the main theme of this story. The story helps us in learning the importance of a true friend.
There arose an argument between the king and his minister in the assembly. The minister said – “A learned man by virtue of his scholarship is respected all over but a king is not.” However, King Senajit did not approve of the statement and ordered the minister Devavrita to prove it. When the minister maintained silence he ordered the minister to leave the country. The minister went to the house of his friends but two of them did not entertain him for fear of incurring the wrath of the king. Finally, he went to the house of one of his best friends, Chandradhara. Chandradhara, ignoring the order of the king, gave resort to him. Later, the king realized his mistake and he personally went to the minister’s house and begged his pardon and took him to the palace. ‘आपत्सु मित्रं जानीयात्’ which means one comes to know who is a true friend during the time of calamity (difficulty). This is the moral of this story.
In the East there was a city called Vaishali. There, a king by name Senajit ruled the kingdom. This king was strong and powerful. There was a well read, truthful and intelligent minister called Devavrata in his court. Devavrata was so intelligent that he did not do anything in haste. Senajit was extremely friendly with him. He always attained success in all his undertakings with the help of the smart and intelligent minister. Hence the king spent his time happily.
Who knows the ways of destiny? (Who can predict destiny?) Once, in the court of the king, there was a conference of the pundits, poets and scholars well versed in the Sastras/various branches of learning. There arose arguments between them. The minister said -(A scholar is not equal to a king) It is not possible for a king to be on par with a scholar. A learned man, by his scholarship, is respected not only in his country but in other countries as well but a king is not. A king is respected only in his country. Without accepting the words of the minister, Senajit said – (It is the king who deserves worship and not the scholar) Without a king a scholar does not deserve respect. Show the proof of your argument.
‘Yes’, said the minister, and maintained silence. But, the king without thinking, ordered the minister to leave the country immediately. The minister, Devavrata, had three friends Vachikamitra, Somadeva and Chandradhara. Devavrata went to the house of his friend Vachikamitra. Devavrata was very close to him. The king would not know about Devavrata living in this bunglow till his last breath (the end of his life). But, after a few days Devavrata realised his friend’s fear of being a traitor to the king and remembering his help left the house and went to the house of Somadeva. Somadeva welcomed Devavrata by offering a seat. Somadeva too (spent time happily) enjoyed the company of Devavrata having food, drinks and other things. ‘Indeed, despite opposition from the King I will extend help. Am I not capable of doing this much?’ Somadeva said. Considering the generosity of his friend when such good words were uttered, Devavrata was very happy. But, very quickly Somadeva said, ‘Oh friend, I will not forget your help. In case the king comes to know about your stay in my house, he will definitely put me to the gallows. I know that it is an offence to offer shelter to a person who has transgressed the command of the king. Hence, quickly leave my house and go elsewhere’.
Hearing the words of Somadeva, Devavrata, unable to bear the sorrow and anger, left his house and stated ‘Ah, fie on me and my two selfish friends’. He decided, “By anger alone such relationships have to be faced. I will look for well wishers somewhere else’. When he was thinking thus he saw Chandradhara, his childhood friend. He had never been honoured. He became extremely happy seeing Devavrata. Being disappointed with his friends, Devavrata came to the house of Chandradhara.
Chandradhara offered him a seat and water for washing his hands and feet. The happiness experienced by Chandradhara was inexplicable.
Devavrata recalled certain incidents in his life and said – ‘Men who have erred in life cheat other people blind in friendship adopting different methods. Some people act according to the situation. They do not desire the welfare of other people’. Definitely this world is full of meaningless traditions. Thus thinking Devavrata expressed his helplessness. He also explained the behaviour of his two friends and the order/command of the king.
Having heard his story Chandradhara consoled him. Ignoring the order of the king he said, Oh friend, if for saving the life of my learned friend my life is at stake, then also I will not swerve from the path of my duty (responsibility). My relatives consider it as my luck if life is given up for the sake of a friend. In reality a friend alone is very important on this earth (in this world). Devavrata, along with his family, carried on his life harmoniously. People honoured and respected Devavrata. The king also felt happy learning the attitude of the friend who was ready to save somebody’s life by offering his own life. The king Senajit, after knowing all this, was unable (became helpless) to carry out the kingly duties/administration without Devavrata. The king came to the house of Chandradhara and pleaded with Devavrata to forgive him and at the same time thought in his mind – Ah! What an attitude of mine is this? With this he not only respected Devavrata but also comforted him. Devavrata, remembering the help of Chandradhara again and again, invited him to his house and went back to the palace with the king.