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Eamavijaya.   ^                       7

the dream, when the latter said to him, " This dream in-
dicates bad omens. I, therefore, advise you to kill a few
stags and perform a penance, so that nothing bad may
happen to you." Listening to the advice of the guru Ba-
sharatha went-to a forest for hunting stags; and though
he worked hard the whole day, he did not come across
any stag. At the sun-set he lay in wait at a lake anxious-
ly expecting a stag there. But, in the meantime, a man
called Shravan came there with a kavada* across his
shoulders in which his helpless old mother and father were
seated by him. His parents, being thirsty, asked their
son to fetch some water for them. Whereupon Shravan
placed the kavada on the ground, and taking a goblet in
his hand, went to the lake ; but whilst he was taking the
water, the king took him for a stag and discharged an
arrow at him, which passed through his heart. Dashara-
tha came where he was lying and became extremely sorry
for the accident, when Shravan said to him, " I shall not
now live. Please, therefore, take some water in this goblet
and give it to my parents, as they are very thirsty; and as
soon as I hear that they have quenched their thirst, I
shall instantly .die. They are very j)ld and cannot walk*
I carry them in a kavada across my shoulder. Oh, my
goo(l king, take care of these poor creatures. There is no
one to look after them/' Dasharatha sighed and wept
but the loss was irreparable. The king then took some
water in the goblet and stood where the kavada was placed
without speaking a word. The old woman and the man,
who were blind, taking him for Shravan, said, " Child,
why doest thou not speak ? Art-thou angry with us, be-
cause we sent thee to the lake at this hour ? Child, thou
art always obedient to us and what has irritated thee to-
day i'V These words made Dasharatha shed tears, and at

* A barctboo lath provided with slings at each end te t!*Q
conveyance across the shoulder of pitcher, &c.