Astika (Hinduism)

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Mahabharata character
The snake sacrifice of Janamejaya, as Astika (boy in red) stops the king
In-universe information
FamilyJaratkaru (father)
Manasa (mother)

Astika was an ancient Hindu rishi (sage), and he was a son of Jaratkaru by the serpent goddess Manasa - a sister of the great serpent king Vasuki. According to the Mahabharata, he saved the life of a serpent Takshaka, the king of snakes, when the king Janamejaya organized a snake sacrifice known as Sarpa Satra, where he made great sacrifices of serpents, to avenge for the death of his father Parikshit[1] due to snakebite of Takshaka. Ultimately, he induced and prevailed upon the king to end his persecution of the serpent race.[2] That day was Shukla Paksha Panchami in Shravan and is since celebrated as the festival of Nag Panchami.[3]


  • Dictionary of Hindu Lore and Legend (ISBN 0-500-51088-1) by Anna L. Dallapiccola
  1. ^ Son of Abhimanyu, who in turn was a son of Arjuna.
  2. ^ Gopal, Madan (1990). K.S. Gautam (ed.). India through the ages. Publication Division, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of India. p. 72.
  3. ^ Garg 1992, p. 743.