Kansa informed by Narada of the existence of Krishna and Balarama: he sends Kesin to destroy them, and Akrura to bring them to Mathura.
AFTER these things had come to pass, Arishta the bull demon and Dhenuka and Pralamba had been slain, Govarddhana had been lifted up, the serpent Kaliya had been subdued, the two trees had been broken, the female fiend Putana had been killed, and the waggon had been overturned, Narada went to Kansa, and related to him the whole, beginning with the transference of the child from Devaki to Yasoda, Hearing this from Narada, Kansa was highly incensed with Vasudeva, and bitterly reproached him, and all the Yadavas, in an assembly of the tribe. Then reflecting what was to be done, he determined to destroy both Krishna and Rama whilst they were yet young, and before they had attained to manly vigour: for which purpose he resolved to invite them from Vraja, under pretext of the solemn rite of the lustration of arms, when he would engage them in a trial of strength with his chief boxers, Chanura and Mushtika, by whom they would assuredly be killed. "I will send," he said, "the noble Yadu, Akrura the son of Swaphalka, to Gokula, to bring them hither: I will order the fierce Kesin, who haunts the woods of Vrindavana, to attack them, and he is of unequalled might, and will surely kill them; or, if they arrive here, my elephant Kuvalayapida shall trample to death these two cow boy sons of Vasudeva." Having thus laid his plans to destroy Rama and Janarddana, the impious Kansa sent for the heroic Akrura, and said to him, Lord" of liberal gifts 1, attend to my words, and, out of friendship
or me, perform my orders. Ascend your chariot, and go hence to the station of the herdsman Nanda. Two vile boys, portions of Vishnu, have been born there, for the express object of effecting my destruction. On the fourteenth lunation I have to celebrate the festival of arms 2, and I wish them to be brought here by
you, to take part in the games, and that the people may see them engage in a boxing match with my two dexterous athletæ, Chanura and Mushtika; or haply my elephant Kuvalayapida, driven against them by his rider, shall kill these two iniquitous youngsters, sons of Vasudeva. When they are out of the way, I will put to death Vasudeva himself, the cowherd Nanda, and my foolish father, Ugrasena, and I will seize upon the herds and flocks, and all the possessions, of the rebellious Gopas, who have ever been my foes. Except thou, lord of liberality, all the Yadavas are hostile to me; but I will devise schemes for their extirpation, and I shall then reign over my kingdom, in concert with thee, without any annoyance. Through regard for me, therefore, do thou go as I direct thee; and thou shalt command the cowherds to bring in with speed their supplies of milk and butter and curds."
Being thus instructed, the illustrious Akrura readily undertook to visit Krishna, and, ascending his stately chariot, he went forth from the city of Mathura.