Pandu was the son of Ambalika and Vichitravirya. Though he was younger than Dhritarashtra, he became king because his brother was blind.After killing a sage in the act of lovemaking, he was cursed to die whenever he attempted to have intercourse with a woman. He then abdicated the throne to live a life of celibacy with his two wifes,Kunt and Madri. Dhristarashtra succeeded the childless Pandu as king. He told Kunti of the curse and she was granted a boon by the sage Durvasa to have children.
Kunti had been given a special chant which could be used to summon a god of her choice to make her pregnant. She tested this boon originally by calling upon Surya, the sun god. She gave birth to Karna, who she abandoned. She then used the boon to summon Yama, Vayu and indra, giving birth to the first three Pandavas, Yudhisthira, Bhima and Arjuna. Madi then used the chant to summon the two Ashvins and she gave birth to Nakula and Sahadeva. After 15 years of celibacy, Pandu forgot the curse and tried to make love to Madri. He then died and Madri killed herself by throwing herself onto her husband's funeral pyre. His children fought and won the Kurukshetra War.
| Preceded by:|
| King of Hastinapura|
| Succeeded by|