MEGHADUTA OF KALIDASA
The MeghadOta. the cloud-
messenger. is widely acclaimed
as Kalidaso's greatest poem. In
this poem of 120 verses a
Yaksha. exiled from his home.
implores a cloud to carry a
messoge to his beloved from
his place of banishment to his
home in the for north. The pining
Yaksha whose intense longing.
stirred ct the sight of the
gathering clouds is a symbol of
the eternal love.
Humanity recognises itself
in the works of Kolidaso though
they deal with Indian themes.
Kalidasa is the great representative of Indio's spirit grace and
genius. To this great poet.
nature is in tune with the joys
and sorrows the hopes and
disappointments of human
A special attraction of this
edition is its line-drawings for
each and every verse by a
world-renowned artist. Shri
Vasudea Smart. a retired Professor of Fine Arts. Benaras Hindu
University. Varanasi. India. He
has painted different types of
clouds on the top and other
line-drawings of various figures
from the caves like Ajanta
Ellora. Badami etc.
Mr. Vinod Patel has prepared miniature paintings of
Meghaduta following the different schools of Indian paintings.
The Meghaduta has directly or indirectly inspired many
artists in India to paint or to
carve sculptures or to cost
bronze statues keeping its subject matter in view. Some of
them are reproduced in coloured plates in this book for the
Dr. GAUTAM VADILAL PATEL
Dr. Gautam Vadilal Patel,
born on 4th August, 1936, is the
Chairman of Sanskrit Sahitya
Akademi, Gu jarat State and the
President of Sanskrit Seva Samiti. He was the head of the
Sanskrit Dept., St. Xavier's College, Ahmedabad, Gujarat.
He. is the blessed desciple
of Brahmalina Swami Shri Gangeshwaranandji Maharaja,
Udasin, the versetile genius of
the Sanskrit Language and literature in general and that of the
Vedas in particular.
He has attended notional
and international seminars and
visited universities or places of
interest at Philadelphia, New
York, Boston, Windsor, Chicago,
Oxford, Cambridge, London,
Paris, lieden, Viena, Rome, Nairobi. Nepal. etc.
He has keen interest in sub-
jects like Vedas, Upanishads,
Gita, Bhagavata, Adi Shankaracharya, Bhasa, Kolidasa, Bhavabhuti, Jagannatha etc. He has
published more than eighty
works in Gujarati. English, Hindi
His works like the commentary of Vallabhadeva on the
Kumarasambhavam of Kolidose. Sayana-bhashya on
for the first time), History of Vedic
literature and culture, Adi Shankaracharya,VedanoVarasaVaibhava, Ruk-Sukta-Manjusha,
etc. deserves special mention.
He was the president of literature section in the 8th world
Sanskrit Conference at Viena,
Austria, and elected President of
the Philosophy and Religion section of the 38th All Indio Oriental
Conference, Jadavpur University,
'Meghadiita' - A Book of National Integration
India is the land of agriculture. The fate of the people of India mainly depends on the nectar
which is showered from the heaven by the 'CLOUD'. When such a cloud becomes
the messenger of love, emotion, feelings and hope from a person to a person, the cloud will
occupy a special corner in the heart of each and every Indian. In one sense the very selection
of the cloud as the messenger, in his widely acclaimed poem Meghduta ,Kalidasa, the bird nightingale
of Indian poets, the uncrowned king of the literary world of India, has captured the love and
admiration of all the Indians at a time and that too once and forever. This little poem of 120
verses has occupied, by and large, right from its inception, the undisputable and unshakable
foothold in the hearts of each and every lover of literature on the Indian soil. Thus this book
has successfully contributed in the emotional integration of the Indian nation.
The Meghaduta, the cloud-messanger, has started a worthy tradition of 'Duta-Kavyas'not
only in Sanskrit but in almost all the languages of India. Many poems, imitating the Meghaduta
of Kalidasa were written in the past, numerous are being written at present and I am sure,
the future generation will also continue the same trend by contributing countless poems in all
the languages of India. This shows how Meghaduta has proved a golden string in binding the
diversified pearls of languages in this vast land of India.
Kalidasa, the worthy writer of this poem, has not only influenced the poetic genius but has
also inspired numerous artists to carve in stone, to paint on canvas or to cast in bronze many
images or instances. Some scholars like Late C. Sivaramamurti has pointed out successfully these
facts in detail but no one has tried to bring out the text of Kalidasa's Meghaduta along with
such pictures of paintings, sculptures or bronze. It is for the first time in the history of publications
of the Sanskrit text that the Sanskrit Seva Samiti has ventured to publish the text of Meghaduta
with such colourful pictures to make the subject interesting as well as to provide the people
of the world the idea of unity in the field of art, literature and sculpture in India.
Sanskrit is the the divine language. English is the International (contact) language.
Hindi is the National language. Marathi is the language of the neighbouring state (Love thy neighbour
as thyself.) and Gujarati is the language of our state. Hence all these five languages are included
in this edition. Paintings or pictures are widely acclaimed as the visual media to convey the
idea easily. Hence the language of pictures is also adopted here to communicate the original
ideas of the renowned writer Kalidasa.
The simple dignity of language, classical taste, intense poetic imagery, cultivated judgement in
expression, a precision of phrase, a perfect fusion of words and thoughts, a complete harmony of
feelings and expressions have bestowed upon the works of Kalidasa a unique place not only in
Sanskrit but in world literature also; and in my humble but firm opinion the place is not undeserved.
The worthy contributors of various articles to this volume deserve most hearty thanks for
their cooperation. Dr. R. K. Sharma, the President of the World Sanskrit Conference, was kind
enough to contribute an article in most simple, lucid and pleasing Sanskrit. He deserves 'agra-tambula'
because it is he whose help has made this volume possible to see the day-light. Dr. K. K. Mishra,
the worthy director of Rastriya Sanskrit Samsthan, New Delhi, deserves special thanks for his
sympathetic guidance and active cooperation. The most worthy scholar of national and international
repute Dr. S. V. Sohoni, the recipient of 'Certificate of Honour from the President of India'
and former Vice-Chancellor of T. M. Vidyapeetha, Pune, has contributed an article on Meghaduta in
English. Prof. G. C. Jhala's article in English is reproduced from his book 'Kalidasa-s-A Study'
published by Sanskrit Seva Samiti. Dr. Sitanshu Yashashchandra, the former Vice-Chancellor of
the Saurashtra University, Rajkot, has written on our request the most original criticism in Gujarati.
Prof. V. J. Trivedi the former Principal of the Gujarat College, the well-known Professor of
English and a media critic was kind enough to prepare for us the English translation. Prof.
Shrinivas Rath, the former Director of Kalidasa Akademi, Ujjain, has translated the poem in the
most poetic manner in Hindi. Dr. K. P. Jog, the former Professor of Sanskrit Dept., Deccan College,
Pune, has most willingly given his Marathi translation. Prof. Kapilray Dave, former Principal at
various colleges in Gujarat and the most renowned professor of Mathematics has rendered meticulous
service in translating the poem in Gujarati and making the whole work worthy to print. Prof.
Vasudeo Smart, the retired Professor of Fine Arts, Benaras Hindu University has prepared line
drawings and Shri Vinod Patel, the miniature paintings of Meghaduta on our request.
Dr. S. K. Andhare, the former director, L. D. Museum, Ahmedabad, has rendered a great
service in acquiring permissions from various institutions in India or providing various photographs
and slides to print from his personal collections. Smt. Jayashree Sanjayabhai Lalbhai has kindly
permitted us to reproduce some of the paintings from the private collection of Late Sheth Shri
Kasturbhai Lalbhai. Smt. Sheela Rajan Harivallabhdas, my most worthy student, has rendered
the best service as the coordinator. Acharya Jayanand Dave has rendered a commendable service
in bringing out this volume. I thank all of them for their most worthy contribution in bringing
out this artistic edition of Meghaduta of Kalidasa.
I would be ungrateful if I do not mention the name of Late Shri Suryakantbhai Jhaveri,
my worthy friend, philosopher and guide and the ardent lover of Sanskrit and culture in general
and that of Meghaduta in particular. His love and admiration for Meghaduta has inspired us
to venture for such a grand project. His worthy sons Suketu, Shirish and Subahu were always
favouring and encouraging us in bringing out this volume in best possible manner. I take this
opportunity to thank them all.
The Typesetting in this book was a task but the complete service has been rendered with
love and admiration by Shri Hasmukhbhai Dave, Shri Milind Dave and the young artist Shri
Naushil. I cannot but thank them wholeheartedly.
Shri Gopalbhai Patel and Shri Pravinbhai Patel of Pravin Prakashan Private Ltd. Rajkot,
have come in picture like the timely shower of rain from the heaven and they have not only
shouldered the responsibility to guide in printing but have willingly accepted to be the distributors
of this volume. I thank them on behalf of all the trustees and members of Sanskrit Seva Samiti,
It is a well-known fact that in this world no scholar or artist can achieve any desired goal
without finance. The Rastriya Sanskrit Samsthan has considered our proposal and given us financial
assistance. I thank them on behalf of the trustees of Sanskrit Seva Samiti.
Last but not the least our thanks to almightly without whose grace none of us is able to
acquire any desired object in this world.
**Contents and Sample Pages**
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