Rāmāyana | Yuddha Kaṇḍa | Chapter 99

99. Rāvaṇa and Rāma Commence Battle

[Bereft of all assistants, Rākṣasa chief Rāvaṇa enters the battle field. Fierce fighting takes place between those great warriors. Both of them were injured by each other and continued to fight.]

Seeing the Rākṣasas Mahodhara and Mahaparswa being killed and also the valorous and strong Virūpākṣa killed in that great battle Rāvaṇa got in to great anger and addressed his charioteer using the following words. 99.1-99.2

For having killed my ministers for having laid a siege on my city, I would remove my sorrow by killing Rāma and Lakṣmaṇa. 99.3

"In that battle I will cut off the tree of Rāma which is going to give a flower called Sītā, whose principal branches are Sugrīva, Jambavan, Kumuda, Nala Dvividha, Mainda, Angada, Gandhamādana, Hanuman and Suṣeṇa and all other monkey chiefs. 99.4-99.5

Filling all ten directions with noise, Rāvaṇa rushed in that chariot towards Rāma. 99.6

Filled with that sound, the entire earth, making its rivers, mountains and forests, tremble and, throwing lions, antelopes and birds, into fright. Rāvaṇa marched. 99.7

Then he used a very horrific and fearful arrow called Tamasā [darkness] which began to attack all the monkeys who fell on all sides. 99.8

When the greatly frightened monkeys, not able to bear that arrow built by Lord Brahma himself, started running away dust began to rise from the earth 99.9

Seeing that hundreds of monkeys of his army were shattered by those excellent arrows of Rāvaṇa, Rāma stood ready for fighting. 99.10

Having driven away the army of monkeys, Rāvaṇa the foremost among the demons then saw Rāma, the destroyer of his enemies, who was endowed with long arms and wide eyes resembling lotus petals standing unconquered with his brother Lakṣmaṇa-like Indra the lord of devas is seen with Vishnu, the supreme lord of preservation-holding up his great bow as though scraping the sky. 99.11- 99.12

That greatly lustrous Rāma who was born in the clan of Raghu along with the strong Lakṣmaṇa, seeing the disappointed monkeys and the advancing Rāvaṇa, happily held his bow by its middle. 99.13-99.14

After that Rāma began to stretch his excellent bow, with great speed and with great sound as if he wanted to break the earth. 99.15

Due the arrows which were rained by Rāvaṇa and sound of stretching of the bow of Rāma, the Rākṣasas started falling in their hundreds. 99.16

Rāvaṇa coming within the ranges of arrows shot by those sons of a king looked like Rāhu standing near the Sun and the moon. 99.17

Wishing to fight early Lakṣmaṇa readied his sharp arrows which were like flames of fire and stretched his bow. 99.18

The greatly lustrous Rāvaṇa prevented in the sky itself the arrows released by the great archer Lakṣmaṇa, the moment they were released. 99.19

Rāvaṇa who was greatly dexterous in use of arrows, split one arrow of Lakṣmaṇa by one arrow, three arrows by three arrows and ten arrows by ten arrows. 99.20

After crossing over Lakṣmaṇa, the son of Sumitrā who as victorious in that battle approached Rāma who stood in the battle field like a mountain. 99.21

That king of Rākṣasas Rāvaṇa with blood red eyes due to anger approached Rāma and rained arrows on him. 99.22

Seeing the streams of arrows that emerged from the bow of Rāvaṇa, Rāma quickly took hold of Bhalla arrows in great haste, 99.23

Then Rāghava broke those large number of lustrous arrows which were looking horrific and coming like snakes by his sharp Bhalla arrows. 99.24

With great speed Rāvaṇa on Rāma and Rāma on Rāvaṇa showered sharp arrows of various kinds on each other. 99.25

Pushing each other by their speed of their arrows, they were both fighting without getting defeated and went round in circles of different kinds from left to right, for a long time. 99.26

All beings were scared when both of them who looked angry were releasing arrows at each other, looking like, god of death and god of destruction respectively. 99.27

The sky at that time became dense with arrows of various kinds and looked like the sky filled with clouds at the end of monsoon along with frequent lightning. 99.28

By that rain of sharp arrows with great speed decorated by wings of vultures there were eye like holes on the sky. 99.29

They made the sky dark initially with their wars and after the sun set their cloud like forms made it even darker. 99.30

There occurred a huge war between both of them, each of whom wanted to kill the other. That was beyond thought and difficult to approach like the war that took place between Vritra and Lord Indra. 99.31

Both of them who were greats in archery, who were experts in war and who were skilled in the use of arrows moved without any hindrance in the battle field. 99.32

In whichever direction that they went the waves of arrows went like waves in that direction like two oceans moved by the same wind. 99.33

Rāvaṇa who had skilful hands and one who made the world cry using series of steel arrows aimed at the forehead of Rāma. 99.34

Rāma tolerated the hit of those arrows on his forehead and took them as lotus petals discharged from a great bow and did not get upset. 99.35

Then after chanting proper chants, the valorous Rāma of great splendour, who was filled with great anger, took and discharged the arrow of Rudra after stretching his bow. 99.36

When those arrows fell on the huge cloud like unbreakable armour of Rāma, those arrows fell down and did not cause him any pain. 99.37

Then Rāma who was expert in all type of arrows, though he was pierced by arrows on his forehead yet again sent a great arrow aimed at Rāvaṇa seated on a chariot. 99.38

Those arrows of Rāma after piercing arrows sent by Rāvaṇa penetrated like five headed snakes in to the earth when Rāvaṇa opposed them. 99.39

Rāvaṇa who was benumbed with anger after destroying that arrow of Rāma sent another horrifying Asura arrow. 99.40

He released sharp arrows, having the heads of lions and tigers, those of buzzards and crows, even of vultures and falcons, as well as those of jackals and wolves, arrows with their mouths wide open, having the heads of venomous snakes with five heads, causing great fear. 99.41-99.42

Hissing like a serpent, due to his very anger Rāvaṇa who was endowed with extraordinary energy and conjuring tricks, released towards Rāma these and other arrows, having the heads of donkeys, those of boars, dogs and cocks as also of alligators and venomous snakes. 99.43-99.44

When the arrow of the Asuras was sent against him, Rāma with great enthusiasm sent the arrow of God of fire. 99.45

Rāma then used, various kinds of arrows, with heads as bright as fire, others with heads shining like the sun, the moon, the crescent, a comet, others shining like planets, lunar mansions and a huge meteor and some arrows resembling flashes of lightning. 99.46-99.47

The horrifying arrows sent by Rāvaṇa was destroyed by the arrows of Rāma, broke in to thousand pieces and fell on the ground. 99.48

Seeing that arrow of Rāma, who never gets tired performing his job, had destroyed the arrows of Rāvaṇa all the monkeys who can assume any form that they desire surrounded lead by Sugrīva and congratulated him. 99.49-99.50

The great soul Rāma who had destroyed the arrows sent by the hand of Rāvaṇa was filled with joy and the monkey chiefs full of joy roared loudly. 99.51

This is the end of Ninety Ninth Sarga of Yuddha Kanda which occurs in Holy Rāmāyaṇa composed by Vālmīki as the First Epic.