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Kadru / कद्रु

Kadru was a daughter of the Prajapati Daksh and wife of Kashyap. Kadru chose to have a thousand serpents as her sons. She delivered a thousand eggs, which hatched after five hundred years, from which were born the thousand serpents.

Once Kadru had a bet with her rival Vinta. Vinta said that the horse Uchchaihshrava was completely white, while Kadru insisted that the tail was black. The one who lost the bet, would be the slave of the other. Kadru, wanting to make sure that she won, told her sons to transform themselves into hairs and hang on to the tail of the horse. Some of the snakes refused to help in the fraud and Kadru cursed them that they would be killed in the serpent sacrifice of Janmejay. The others obeyed their mother and hung on to the tail of Uchchaihshrava, and Kadru won her bet. Vinta became her slave. (She was later freed from the bonds of slavery by her younger son Garud). One day, Kadru wanted to go to the Ramanak island in the middle of the ocean. She asked Vinta to carry her there and Garud to carry her children. Garud got angry and flew with the serpents on his back close to the sun. Seeing her children being scorched, Kadru prayed to Indra, who caused a rainfall, and they all reached the island safely.