Nala Damayanti is a romantic tale in the epic Mahabharata. Damayanti was the princesses of Vidarbha. She learns of the handsome and righteous Nala, ruler of Nishada, from a swan sent by Nala.
Father of Damayanti, King Bhima announces her Swayamwara – the marriage function in which she will choose her husband among the assembled princes.
Nala sets out for the Swayamwara. On his way, Indra, Agni, Varuna and Yama confront him. Each of them wanted to marry Damayanti and urges Nala to ask her to choose one amongst them.
Nala obliges but Damayanti rejects the suggestion.
The disappointed Devas takes the form of Nala and reaches the Swayamwara venue.
However, Damayanti is able to identify the real Nala and choose him.
Evil spirits Kali and Dwapara too wished to attend the Swayamvara. But they were late and they felt disappointed. They decided to wreak vengeance on Nala. Kali enters the body of Nala, and makes him play a game of dice with his evil brother Pushkara. Nala loses the game and both he and Damayanti are banished to spend twelve years in the forest.