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Story of Chaste Damayanti – Wife of Nala

Queen Damayanti was the wife of King Nala. She is renowned for her chastity and noble thoughts. It is mentioned in the Mahabharata that Damayanti was able to annihilate a womanizer through her chastity.

King Nala lost a game of dice and both he and Damayanti are banished to spend twelve years in the forest.

Nala only had a single piece of cloth on this body. In the forest, once he attempted to catch a few birds with golden wings and lost his only garment.

King Nala and Damayanti were sleeping under a tree and they covered their body with what Damayanti had worn. Nala was worried about Damayanti in the dense forest and he knew she would not willingly leave him.

Therefore, he decided to abandon Damayanti thinking that upon not seeing him she will return to her father.

When Damayanti woke up Nala was not to be seen. While searching for her husband, she came across a tiger. She panicked and started running, with the tiger back on her trail.

Soon a hunter rescued her. However, he was a womanizer and he attempted to molest Damayanti.
An angry Damayanti prayed to the Gods – If I am chaste and if I have thought of no man other than Nala, then let this hunter fall dead at this very moment.

As soon as she finished her words, the hunter fell to the ground and died.

Damayanti then reached the kingdom of Chedi and with the help of Chedi King Subhahu, she was able to reach her kingdom, Vidarbha, and meet her father Bhishmak.

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