AFTER the Mahabharata war and following Bhishma’s death, all the kings from all corners of the country attended his cremation ceremony. It was a sad occasion because he was not only the elder of the Kuru clan but also the last representative of the old order. For the Pandavas, Bhishma’s death was a personal tragedy as he was the only father they had known.
A few days after the cremation, Abhimanyu’s widow, Uttari, gave birth to a son but the midwife who helped in the delivery, cried out, “This boy is not crying or moving. I think he is stillborn.”
On hearing this, all the Kuru women began to weep and wail, “This is a curse on us. Now the Kauravas will not have any descendant.”
On hearing them cry, Sri Krishna came to them and said, “Don’t be worried. The child is alive.” He then turned to the stillborn child and tired to revive him by saying, “Do not worry, the world is not such a bad place to live in.”
On hearing his comforting words, the child opened his eyes and smiled. Sri Krishna reciprocated the smile and gave him to Uttari, saying, “This is Parikshit, the first of the next generation.”
There was rejoicing all around and the Kuru women began to dance and sing.