Killing each other in the great conflict, the two armies quickly became decimated, like two lakes in the hot season. Ravana became twice as angry because of the destruction of his own army and the slaughter of Virupaksha. He became very disturbed upon seeing the decimation of his army under the assault of the monkeys and the adversity of his own fate. Then he spoke as follows to Mahodara, who was standing beside him: “At the present time my hopes for victory rest on you. Exhibit your prowess today and destroy the enemy army! Now is the time for you to repay your master for having maintained you. Fight well!”
When commanded in this way, Mahodara accepted, then entered the enemy ranks, as a moth would dash into a fire. Emboldened by his master’s words, Mahodara used his own mighty energy to wreck havoc among the monkeys. Grabbing huge rocks and entering the enemy ranks, the highly courageous monkeys started slaughtering all the rakshasas. Mahodara became furious and used his arrows adorned with gold to sever the hands, feet and thighs of monkeys in that battle. In this way, all the monkeys were terribly afflicted by the rakshasas. Some of them fled in all directions, while others took shelter of Sugreeva.
Seeing the great army of monkeys devastated in combat, Sugreeva rushed toward Mahodara, who was nearby. Seizing a huge and formidable boulder that was like a mountain, that king of monkeys hurled it in order to kill Mahodara. When Mahodara suddenly saw that the boulder was approaching, Mahodara was not disturbed and shattered the boulder with arrows. Broken into thousands of pieces by the rakshasa’s numerous arrows, the shattered boulder fell on the ground like a flock of frightened vultures. Sugreeva became furious when he saw the boulder smashed and so he pulled up a Shaala tree and threw it at Mahodara. But Mahodara splintered it with arrows. Mahodara, the scourge of his enemies, lacerated Sugreeva’s body with arrows. Then Sugreeva saw an iron bludgeon fallen on the ground. Brandishing that bludgeon and exhibiting his dexterity, Sugreeva killed the excellent horses pulling Mahodara’s chariot.
Jumping down from that big chariot whose horses were dead, the raging Mahodara then grabbed a mace. Armed with a mace and an iron bludgeon, those two warriors approached each other, roaring like two bulls and resembling two clouds interlaced with lightning. Mahodara then flung his blazing mace, which was as resplendent as the sun, at Sugreeva. Seeing that most formidable mace approaching, Sugreeva, whose eyes had turned coppery-red due to anger, lifted his bludgeon. Sugreeva struck the mace with his bludgeon, knocking it to the ground. The force of the mace also knocked the bludgeon down. The ardent Sugreeva then picked up from the ground a dreadful steel club adorned all over with gold. Sugreeva raised it and hurled it, and the rakshasa likewise hurled a mace. Colliding with each other, the weapons shattered and fell on the ground.
Once their weapons were destroyed, the two zealous warriors who resembled two blazing fires fought with each other using their fists. Roaring again and again, they punched each other. Drawing close, they knocked each other on the ground. They then quickly jumped up and started punching each other again. Unable to defeat each other, they shoved each other with their arms. While they were struggling fiercely, they became tired. Then the fleet rakshasa grabbed a sword and shield that were not very far away. Sugreeva too, who was even more impetuous, grabbed a sword and shield that were fallen. With the limbs of their bodies seized with anger, they roared and charged toward each other with raised weapons, eager as they were for battle. They quickly circled about each other from left to right. They were both enraged and eager to conquer the other.
The evil-minded Mahodara, proud as he was of his valor, struck his sword against Sugreeva’s coat of armor. As Mahodara was struggling to extract his sword from Sugreeva’s armor, Sugreeva used his own sword to chop off Mahodara’s head adorned with earrings. After seeing Mahodara’s head severed and fallen on the ground, his army vanished from the battlefield. After killing Mahodara, Sugreeva roared jubilantly along with the other monkeys. Rama became very pleased and the ten-headed Ravana became furious. The rakshasas’ faces were downcast and their minds distressed. Stricken with fear, they fled in all directions. Sugreeva threw Mahodara’s body down on the ground, like a part broken off from a big mountain. Sugreeva then stood their shining with glory, like the sun which is unassailable because of its rays. After gaining victory, Sugreeva stood there on the frontline of battle and gazed at the hordes of gods, siddhas and yakshas, as well as the crowds of beings on the earth’s surface who were all overwhelmed with joy.
Thus completes 97th Chapter of Yuddha Kanda of the glorious Ramayana of Valmiki, the work of a sage and the oldest epic.
Sriman Moola Rama Vijayate