The translation of Vālmīki Rāmāyaṇa on this site says Indra forced himself upon Ahalyā:




Thereupon she propitiated the ascetic Gautama saying, "O twice born one, I was unwittingly ravished by Indra, assuming thy form. I have not committed this willingly, O ascetic so do thou be propitiated with me."

Ahalya having said this, Gautama replied "In the race of Ikshwakus, there shall be born a highly effulgent and mighty car warrior, known in the world as Rama; for performing the rites of a Brahman, the mighty armed Vishnu, assuming a human form, shall repair to the forest.


This obviously contradicts the earlier version from Bāla-kāṇḍa that says Ahalyā knew it was Indra who came disguised as Gautama:




On knowing the meantime of Gautama's availability at hermitage, Indra, the husband of Shaci Devi and the Thousand eyed god wearing the guise of sage Gautama and becoming such a sage, approached Ahalya and said this to her. (1 48 17) Oh, finely limbed lady, indulgers do not watch out for the time to conceive, as such oh, slender waisted one, I desire copulation with you. (1 48 18) Oh, Rama, the legatee of Raghu, though knowing him as the Thousand eyed Indra in the guise of her husband Gautama, she is inclined to have intercourse ill advisedly, only to satisfy the impassion of the King of Gods. (1 48 19)

She felt fulfilled in her heart of hearts and then she said this to that best god Indra, I am gratified in complying with your wish, oh, best of Gods, get going oh, lord, from here quickly, oh, ruler of Gods, always safeguard yourself and me from Sage Gautama. Thus, Ahalya said to Indra. (1 48 20, 21a)


How does the Critical Edition of Vālmīki Rāmāyaṇa resolve this contradiction?

Is the verse from Uttara-kāṇḍa present in the critical edition?

  • 1
    Ahalya might be lying- when someone is caught redhanded they try to find the wrong way out, That's why her husband still cursed her. It isn't contradictory. That's why Lord rama had to remove the sins of ahalya, if she was innocent she would not turn to stone.
    – Anisha
    Commented May 30, 2018 at 19:45
  • Yes, it's quite possible. But if she was really lying, Gautama would know about it and confront her. And we have to remember it was Agastya who was relaying the story to Rāma. At least he would have told Rāma what the true story was and that Ahalyā was lying. Commented May 30, 2018 at 19:53
  • @sv. Can I see shloka of this commentary? Right now you only showing paragraphs, not any shloka. And your given links also showing only paragraphs. Where is shlokas? Without shlokas, it's hard to believe that it's really from Ramayana! Anyone can cooked up story and wright on site in form of paragraphs. Please mentions specific shaloka if any.
    – Vishvam
    Commented May 31, 2018 at 8:51
  • @Rishabh First off, it's translation of verses I posted, not commentary. I don't have the Sanskrit verses for the translation available on that website. But a lot of answers on this site already cite that website (ancientvoice.wikidot.com/source:ramayana). Also, as an asker, I'm not required to find original Sanskrit verses before posting. Whatever Sanskrit verses you're talking about belong in the answer. Commented May 31, 2018 at 15:22
  • @sv. My point was that, anyone can add his own story in Ramayan in their website. So your given link is not trustworthy. It seems fake to me. I can also made many these kinds of websites(as I am web developer) and write my own coocked up story. There is no proof that this is actually translation of a shaloka/verse. It is just self made story by author of the site. If you wanna read Ramayana then red from valmikiramayan.net which gives story with verse. That's why it is trustworthy. Don't go on any other site who just post paragraphs without verse.
    – Vishvam
    Commented Jun 1, 2018 at 4:11

2 Answers 2


No, the particular verse you are talking about of Uttara Kanda is not present in critical edition of Valmiki Ramayana. The exact verse found in other versions is Valmiki Ramayana, Uttara Kanda, Chapter 30, Verse 39 and 40

तदाप्रभृति भूयिष्ठं प्रजा रूपसमन्विता।
सा तं प्रसादयामास महर्षि गौतमं तदा ।।३९।।
अज्ञानाद्धर्षिता विप्र त्वद्रूपेण दिवौकसा।
न कामकाराद्विप्रर्षे प्रसादं कर्तुमर्हसि ।।४०।।

Thereupon she propitiated the ascetic Gautama saying, "O twice born one, I was unwittingly ravished by Indra, assuming your form. I have not committed this willingly, O ascetic- so do you be propitiated with me."

But the above verse is not present in critical edition of Valmiki Ramayana found here or here.


I am not sure what you call the Critical Edition of Rāmāyaṇa but it is not from those 5 Sargas which are believed to be interpolated. This shloka can be found in 30th Sarga (this number is after removing 5 interpolated Sargas else it would be 35th Sarga) of UTTARA KANDA of Valmiki Ramayana:

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As shloka clearly says that these lines were said by Ahalya to propitiate Gautama so they might not be 100% true.

  • "I am not sure what you call the Critical Edition of Rāmāyaṇa" - you could've just googled. It's on archive.org here and here. Commented May 31, 2018 at 21:43
  • @sv. Both links are for Balakanda...can I hv Uttarakhand link pls?
    – YDS
    Commented Jun 1, 2018 at 4:30
  • Sorry, I thought archive.org had the whole thing. Try this. Commented Jun 1, 2018 at 16:03

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