Dasaratha, King of Ayodhya was blessed with four sons and the eldest being Rama. Rama had great skills of warriors as well as in the ways of being a king. But, Rama went into exile for fourteen years in order to respect his father’s promises to his second wife Kaikeyi.
Rama, wife Sita and brother Lakshmana were living in exile. They moved from one place to another and Rama, a mighty warrior, protected holy sages from evil demons of the forest by destroying them and paid their respect to the sages. Their journey continued and they reached a place called Panchavati on the banks of River Godavari.
Shurpanakha meets Rama:-
The place Panchavati was very charming with a pleasant nature and greenery. Lakshmana built a beautiful hut to live along the riverside.One day, demon Shurpanakha, sister of Ravana, was wandering about and was instantly struck by Rama and Lakshmana’s adorable looks and fell in love. She assumed the appearance of a beautiful woman and approached Rama.
She requested Rama to marry her and live happily in the forest. But Rama informed about his wife Sita and asked her to request Lakshmana who was also good-looking. But Lakshmana rejected her saying that,she will become a servant too as he was Rama’s devout-attendant. Evil Shurpanakha thought that if she kills Sita then Rama will marry her, so she pounced upon Sita. Rama shouted for Lakshmana, who flew with full of anger, drew out his sword and cut off her nose. She ran away into the forest with pain, screaming and approached brothers Khara and Dushana. She informed about Rama and Lakshmana and asked them to avenge the insult heaped on her.
Furiously, they along with their army marched against Rama. Rama fought against them while Lakshmana stood guard near Sita. One by one, Rama killed everyone and finally killed Khara and Dhushana too. Shurpanakha watched in horror as her brothers and their army was destroyed. She flew at once to Lanka to seek the protection of Ravana.
Ravana was shocked to see her disfigured and asked her for the cause. Shurpanakha narrated the whole story, pleaded him for revenge and informed about the beauty of Sita.Ravana thought of an evil plan that would get lovely Sita.
Ravana flew in his ‘magical chariot’ and reached demon Maricha. He asked Maricha, master of disguise, to take the form of a golden deer. Maricha who already had an experience of being punished by Rama refused at first but as he knew that either way he would be killed so preferred to be killed by Rama and agreed finally.
Maricha transformed into a golden deer and roamed in-front of Sita.Sita asked Rama to catch it for her. Rama asked Lakshmana to look after Sita and went behind the deer. The deer led him deep into the forest and at last when Rama found it impossible to catch it alive, he killed it with a sharp arrow. As the arrow struck, Maricha gained his true form and screamed loudly imitating Rama asking for help to Sita and Lakshmana.
Ravana’s plan had worked.Thinking that some problem had occurred to Rama and upon Sita’s request, Lakshmana left Sita alone in-search of Rama.
Before he left, he drew a line across Sita and asked her not to cross till he returned. Ravana watching from a distance disguised himself as a hermit and approached Sita. Sita bought some food to offer the holy man standing within the line. Ravana asked her to come out of that line and offer. But before Sita could realize what she was doing, Ravana caught hold of her hand and took her away in his chariot towards Lanka. Sita screamed out loudly for help. As he drove, Jatayu, the great eagle, objected Ravana and fought with him. But Ravana mercilessly, cut off his wing and Jatayu fell down.Sita’s attempt to escape went all in vain and as they drove,Sita took of her jewellery and threw it down hoping that Rama may see it.