Open main menu

Subhadra (IAST: Subhadrā) is a character in the Mahabharata written by Vyasa. She is worshiped as an incarnation of Goddess Yogmaya. In the epic, she is the sister of Krishna and Balarama, wife of Arjuna and mother of Abhimanyu and grandmother of Parikshit. She is the daughter of Vasudeva and Rohini Devi. Subhadra is known as Veera sodari (brave sister), Veera Patni (brave wife) and Veera matha (brave mother) due to her relationship with Krishna, Arjuna and Abhimanyu respectively.[citation needed]

Incarnation of Goddess Yogmaya
Ravi Varma-Arjuna and Subhadra.jpg
Arjuna and Subhadra. Painting by Raja Ravi Varma
Personal information
OffspringAbhimanyu (son), Uttara (daughter-in-law) and Parikshit (grandson)
ParentsVasudeva (father), Devaki (stepmother), Rohini (mother)
SiblingsKrishna and Balarama (brothers)


Marriage preparationsEdit

When Subhadra becomes of age, Balarama suggests her as a bride to Duryodhana who was his favourite pupil. Krishna (knowing that Arjuna and Subhadra are deeply in love with each other) tells Arjuna that they should elope with each other to avoid her marriage with Duryodhana.

Kidnapping of SubhadraEdit

Arjuna kidnaps Subhadra.jpg
Subhadra, the half sister of Krishna, drives a chariot away from Dwaraka with Arjuna.

Vyasa's Mahabharata states that Subhadra was in love with Arjuna. Arjuna was in the midst of self-imposed pilgrimage, for breaking terms of the agreement he had with his brothers regarding private time with their common wife Draupadi. He reached the city of Dwarka and meets Krishna with whom he spends time. Later he attends a festival held at Raivata mountain alongside Krishna.[citation needed] Other Yadava women including Subhadra were also there to see the festival. After seeing Subhadra, Arjuna is smitten by her beauty and wishes to marry her. Lord Krishna knowing the fact that Subhadra is also deeply in love with Arjuna, agreed to their wedding. But knowing the fact that Balarama has already promised her to Duryodhana, he suggested him to elope with her. Also knowing that after getting the news of Subhadra's kidnap, Balarama would wage a war against Arjuna, he suggested Subhadra to be the Charioteer to Arjuna during the kidnapping, so that everyone thinks thats it's Subhadra who kidnapped Arjuna. After getting the news, Balarama and other Yadavas are angered by this and decide to pursue Arjuna. But they are dissuaded by Krishna by informing that it is Subhadra who kidnapped Arjuna. Finally, Balarama consents and conduct the marriage of Subhadra with Arjuna.[1]


The Wooden idol of Subhadra in the annual procession
Subhadra in the middle with her brothers Balabhadra (Balarama) and Jagannath (Krishna)
Maa Bhubaneshwari is worshipped instead of Subhadra during her fever.[clarification needed]

Certain sections of Hindus believe Subhadra to be a goddess named Yogmaya. Subhadra is one of the three deities worshipped at the Jagannath temple at Puri, along with Krishna (as Jagannatha) and Balarama (or Balabhadra). One of the chariots in the annual Ratha Yatra is dedicated to her. Apart from it she is also believed to be worshiped by certain communities in Odisha, West Bengal and Gujarat.* [2]

See AlsoEdit


  1. ^ Ganguli, K M. "THE MAHABHARATA : SUBHADRA HARANA PARVA". Retrieved 28 October 2015.
  2. ^ "Why Subhadra Is Worshipped With Krishna In Jagannath Yatra". Retrieved 15 June 2017.