PANORAMA ON MAHABHARATA-BATTLE OF KURUKSHETRA

The main attraction of the Centre is a life-like Panorama of the epic battle of Mahabharata fought at Kurukshetra. Standing at the centre of the cylindrical hall, visitors can witness the towering 34 feet high paintings of the episodes, from the 18-day confrontation between the Pandvas and the Kauravas, come alive before their eyes. The compilation of Mahabharata is believed to have been done between c.400 BC to AD 400. The epic is scattered with sporadic statements of scientific importance. They are related to various branches of science like astronomy, medicine, chemistry, botany, zoology, warfare, geographical knowledge etc. Geological evolution of our land, the geography of ancient India and the main characters of the epic etc. support and supplement some of these references. Presentation through slides depicts how and when the seven-continent theory emerged whose earliest references occur in the Ramayana, Mahabharata, and Patanjali’sMahabhasya, which is much similar to the continental drift theory proposed by German geologist Alfred Wegener in 1912. The computer-based exhibits in the gallery provide an opportunity to the visitors to explore the intricacies of weapons (Astras), war or battle formation (Vyuhas) or the interpretation of the events like a total solar eclipse by the ancient people. An attempt has also been made to find the possible dates of Mahabharata war using astronomical data and historical facts.
This presentation also deals with different categories of weapons like astras&divyastras (which are made of copper, bronze, gold, stone and probably iron while divyastras were said to be of divine origin) apart from a large variety of missiles. The age of the epic marks the beginning of Iron Age in India. The display also provides an opportunity to the visitor to understand various battle formations or vyuhas, including the much talked-about Chakravyuha. The rank and file of army and its size is denoted by the term Akshouhinee and the system is very much similar to the present system followed in the army. The chanting of the Gita and distant war cries mingled with recreated war scene supported by specially designed lighting effects create the perfect ambience to provide immersive experience to the visitors.