(Last Updated on : 18-12-2010)
Conduct of Madhyama King, as mentioned in Chapter XVIII of Book VI in Arthashastra
, mentions that a Madhyama king who stands in the centre of a conqueror and the enemy king have to quite selective in choosing his friendly ally as well as unfriendly foe. While the third and the fifth state are friendly to him, the second, fourth and sixth are unfriendly to the Madhyama king. If the Madhyama King shows favour to both these kings then the conqueror shall be friendly to both these kings whereas if he does not favour these kings the conqueror shall favour those states only and not the Madhyama king. In case of expanding his connections the Madhyama king has to be careful as if he desires to make friendship with the conqueror's would - be friend, he may incur the conqueror's enmity who shall set his friend as well as his friend's friend against the Madhyama king and declare him to have grown haughty which shall invite warring conditions against the madhyama king by the conqueror.
Conduct of Madhyama King which has been mentioned in Arthashastra restricts the Madhyama king to have any ambition which shall reduce conqueror's friend and bring them into direct conflict. In such conditions The conqueror, by means of men and money and by means of conciliation and gifts, can win either the relationship or the neighbouring king who bears hatred towards the Madhyam king and make all efforts to win over the Circle of states against the Madhyama King which shall finally put him down and restrict him from growing any sense of ambition against a powerful conqueror.
Conduct of Madhyama King further suggests that if the conditions are unfriendly to the success of the Conqueror for his above attempt then he can by peace, seek the friendship of one of the enemies of the madhyama king and cause some traitors against the Madhyama king and should make all efforts to restrict the Madhyam king's intention to reduce the conqueror's friends. In case of friends of the conqueror who are assailable or reducible enemies of the Madhyama king but intend to help the Madhyama king then the conqueror should make friend with the third friend while establish peace and friendship with the those who are capable of providing some kind of defence and make sure that they don't possess any new danger to the position of the conqueror. In case the Madhyama king is desirous to secure friendship with the conqueror's would be friend then the conqueror should establish friendship with the third friend and see to it that the does not go to the camp of the Madhyama king in any way.
Thus Conduct of Madhyama King mainly explains the level of insecurity which the conqueror faces from the Madhyama king who is capable of rebuilding his strength against the conqueror. Kautilya
suggests the conqueror to be watchful towards the growing strength of the Madhyama king and restrict from forming new alliances with the same group of friends of the conqueror and advises the conqueror to closely tie his allies together with conciliations and gifts so that they don't change their mind. Thus, a conqueror according to Kautilya, not only faces danger from the enemy king but also the king who stands at the middle who is neither powerless nor too powerful to conquer the conqueror single handed.