11    Mutual curses of Lakshmi, Saraswati and Ganga land them in Bharata Varsha
Originally Lakshmi, Saraswati and Ganga were the wives of Shri Hari in Vaikuntha. Saraswati felt that Shri Hari was getting fonder of Ganga and complained to Lakshmi but Lakshmi was neutral. Saraswati was irritated and cursed Lakshmi to become a tree as she was insenstive. Ganga felt bad that Saraswati was unnecessarily interfering and cursed Saraswati; this led Saraswati to curse Ganga. Reacting to these curses, Shri Hari gave dispensations as follows: Lakshmi would be born as a tree in the house of King Dharmadhwaja and become the wife of Asura Shankhachuda, a Vishnu devotee and later on turn out to be Shri Hari’s dear wife and live for ever as Tulasi and also as a River named Padmavati in BharataVarsha; Devi Ganga due to Saraswati’s curse would become a Holy River to demolish the sins of those who take baths on her waters and eventually flow down in Bharata Varsha due to the persistent efforts of Bhagirath and be called as Bhagirathi and be the wife of Samudra who was also of Shri Hari’s ‘Amsha’ and at the same time be at the ‘Shiva Sthaan’; and Saraswati as a result of Ganga’s curse would become the wife of Brahma; and finally Lakshmi who was of Satwa Tatwa without any anger or jealousy and would be Shri Hari’s own wife eventually.As Shri Hari gave the dispensations as follows, all the three Devis viz. Lakshmi, Saraswati and Ganga embraced each other and felt ashamed of their indiscretions which resulted in the repercussions and prayed to Bhagavan Shrihari as to when the arrangements would terminate and the latter pacified the Devis that he would not only ratify the curses that they made to each other but also retain their positions in Vaikuntha with equal attentions and affections to all the three Devis. Saraswati would keep half ‘Amsha’ in Bharata Varsha and half with Brahma and the total Amsha with himself (Shri Hari); similarly in respect of Ganga, half of Vishnu’s Amsha would be Bhagirathi in Bharata Varsha sanctifying the Beings and by slashing their sins there and the rest of Amsha remaining intact with himself as also have the unique privilege of remaining on Shankara’s holy head; as regards Lakshmi, one Amsha would be Tulasi as also as River Padmavati for Kali Yuga’s five thousand years and all the Devis would return to Vaikuntha thereafter.The occurrence of the curses among the Devis and the arrangements that were made about them by Shri Hari had some hidden meaning: even while there were several Tirthas in Bharat Varsha, there was a great need for some outstanding Rivers and Punya Kshetras where not only devotees of Shri Hari, but even hopeless sinners and ‘Nastiks’(athiests) should have possibilities for self-improvement. That was the reason for the emergence of these Sacred and sin-washing Rivers for quick-if not instant- relief to them. Bhagavan Vishnu indicated that there were several persons, who thrived on cheating, making false promises, social parasites, promise breakers, ‘Vishwaas ghaatis’, givers of wrong and misleading evidences, occupiers of others’ properties and belongings; those who discard parents and blood-relatives; swindle or forcibly bamboozle others etc. The purpose of the Sacred Tirthas like Ganga, Padma and Saraswati was thus to exonerate and correct such misled persons to reform them and lessen the budren on Earth.

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