The story of Yayati is perhaps one of the most intriguing and fascinating episodes of Mahabharata.
Yayati was a great scholar and one of the noblest rulers of olden times. He followed the shastras and was devoted to the welfare of his subjects. Even the King of Gods, Indra, held him in high esteem. Married to seductively beautiful Devyani, in love with her maid Sharmishtha, and father of five sons from two women, yet Yayati unabashedly declares, 'My lust for pleasure is unsatisfied...'
His quest for the carnal continued, sparing not even his youngest son, and exchanging his old age for his son's youth...
Winner of The Jnanpith and Sahitya Akademi Awards. Over 3,00,000 copies sold!
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Translated from Marathi by Y P Kulkarni
Vishnu Sakharam Khandekar (1898-1976) is acknowledged as one of the all time greats of Marathi literature. In his literary career spanning nearly half a century he published eleven novels, thirty one collections of short stories, six collection of allegorical stories and fifteen volumes of critical literary essays. In 1941 he became the President of the Marathi Sahitya Sammelan and was later nominated a Fellow of India's National Academy of Letters, the Sahitya Akademi in 1975. His works have been translated into several languages, including English, Hindi, Malayalam, Bengali and Gujarati, amongst others.
Yayati remains his best known and perhaps his most critically acclaimed work. It won him the prestigious Sahitya Akademi Award (1960) and the Jnanpith Award, India's highest literary award, in 1974. He was conferred the Padma Bhushan in 1968 for his landmark contribution to Indian literature.