Krishna and Kaliya

- January 25, 2021


By Shivam Pathania

Illustration: Durgesh Velhal

Kaliya was a ferocious naga that lived on the Ramanaka Dwipa of the Yamuna River but left the island in fear of the Garuda, a celestial being possessing human and eagle features. Since eagles feed on snakes, Garuda was Kaliya’s nemesis. The multi-headed naga came to Vrindavan as Garuda was cursed and could not enter the village. The venom that seeped out of its multiple mouths boiled the water around him and killed any living being that came in contact with the contaminated water. He, unlike the other nagas, does not have an origin in the scriptures.

Illustration: Durgesh Velhal

Once Krishna and his friends were playing near the river with a ball. While playing their ball fell into the river, and Krishna went jumped in to fetch it. In the river, he was attacked by the violent snake. The snake tried to crush Krishna by coiling around him but Krishna escaped effortlessly. Krishna dragged the snake onto the surface of the river, jumped on one of its heads, and started performing his cosmic dance. He had assumed the weight of the entire universe in his tiny feet and almost crushed the naga to death. But Krishna stopped after hearing the prayers of Kaliya’s wives. The humiliated and defeated snake asked for forgiveness from Krishna and Krishna commanded him to return back to his island of Ramanaka and blessed him that his vahana, Garuda, would never attack him.

The story of Krishna and Kaliya is also available in our ACK Junior Collection, now available on the ACK Comics App, Kindle, Amazon, Flipkart, and other major e-tailers. 

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