In the Tamil book, Villibharatham, it is mentioned that it was Lord Krishna who disguised himself as a Brahmin to obtain the kavach and kundala of Karna. This view is made popular by this movie song as well.

However I have read contrasting view that it was Indra, Arjuna's father who went to Karna disguised as a Brahmin. Which of these is correct as per the original scripture?

2 Answers 2


The original story is described in Mahabharata, Vana Parva, SECTION CCCVIII. According to this, Indra has obtained Kavach and Kundal from Karna.

Vaisampayana said, "And when the king of the celestials presented himself in the guise of a Brahmana, beholding him, Kama said, 'Welcome!' And not knowing his intention, Adhiratha's son addressed the Brahmana, saying, 'Of a necklace of gold, and beauteous damsels, and villages with plenty of kine, which shall I give thee?' Thereupon the Brahmana replied, 'I ask thee not to give me either a necklace of gold, or fair damsels, or any other agreeable object. To those do thou give them that ask for them. If, O sinless one, thou art sincere in thy vow, then wilt thou, cutting off (from thy person) this coat of mail born with thy body, and these ear-rings also, bestow them on me! I desire, O chastiser of foes, that thou mayst speedily give me these; for, this one gain of mine will be considered as superior to every other gain!' Hearing these words, Kama, said, 'O Brahmana, I will give thee homestead land, and fair damsels, and kine, and fields; but my mail and ear-rings I am unable to give thee!'"

Vaisampayana continued, "Although thus urged with various words by Karna, still, O chief of the Bharata race, that Brahmana did not ask for any other boon. And although Karna sought to pacify him to the best of his power, and worshipped him duly, yet that best of Brahmanas did not ask for any other boon. And when that foremost of Brahmanas did not ask for any other boon, Radha's son again spake unto him with a smile, 'My mail, O regenerate one, hath been born with my body, and this pair of ear-rings hath arisen from Amrita. It is for these that I am unslayable in the worlds. Therefore, I cannot part with them. Do thou, O bull among Brahmanas, accept from me the entire kingdom of the earth, rid of enemies and full of prosperity! O foremost of regenerate ones, if I am deprived of my ear-rings, and the mail born with my body, I shall be liable to be vanquished by the foes!'

Vaisampayana continued, "When the illustrious slayer of Paka refused to ask for any other boon, Kama with a smile again addressed him, saying, 'O god of gods, even before this, I had recognised thee, O Lord! O Sakra, it is not proper for me to confer on thee any unprofitable boon, for thou art the very lord of the celestials! On the contrary, being as thou art the Creator and lord of all beings, it is thou that shouldst confer boons on me! If, O god, I give thee this coat of mail and ear-rings, then I am sure to meet with destruction, and thou shalt also undergo ridicule! Therefore, O Sakra, take my earrings and excellent mail in exchange for something conferred by thee on me! Otherwise, I will not bestow them on thee!' Thereupon Sakra replied, 'Even before I had come to thee, Surya had known of my purpose and without doubt, it is he that hath unfolded everything unto thee! O Karna, be it as thou wishest! O son, except the thunder-bolt alone, tell me what it is that thou desirest to have!'"


I don't know from which movie you saw Lord Krishna disguised and got Kavasa Kundala. It was Indra who disguised as an Old Man and got Karna's own wealth.

On the other hand, Lord Krishna disguised to get all the boons from Karna in the battlefield.

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