(Last Updated on : 20/12/2010)
Forms of Equipments and Work of Arraying a Rival Force in the Chapter II of Book IX in Arthashastra
, entails that the primary interest of a conqueror is to obstruct the progress of the enemy and make his movement fruitless, cause him delay and deceive him so that he losses his time of attack and ends up in total failure. Regarding the composition of the army Kautilya
claims that within the composition of the conqueror's army the most trusted are the hereditary troops which has existed longer than his the hired troops and has been tested for a longer time; that the hired troops which is ever near, ready to rise quickly and is professionally more obedient is better than the corporation of soldiers; that the corporation of soldiers which is native, which has the same end in view, which is actuated with the same feelings of rivalry, anger and expectation of success and gain is better than the army of the a friend; the army of an enemy under the leadership of an Arya is better than that of wild tribes in which the wild tribes and the army of the enemy mainly depend on plunder than providing security to one's area.
Forms of Equipments and Work of Arraying a Rival Force further entails that the army which comprises of Brahmans, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas and Sudras
and which accounts for bigger account of bravery bears slight stress of danger as the enemy can win over the army of Brahmans through prostration while the army comprising of Kshatriyas who are trained in wielding weapons is better and the army consisting of Vaishyas and Sudras add to the number of heads in the army. Hence Kautilya advises the conqueror that at the time of recruiting the army the conqueror should keep in mind the composition of the army and array it accordingly which shall organise his war strategy as well.
Forms of Equipments and Work of Arraying a Rival Force then enlists the type of equipments to be used by the army. While the army shall possess elephants, machines, chariots, cavalry, and infantry; it shall use equipments like Sakatagarbha, Kunta (a wooden rod), Prasa (a weapon 24 inches long, with two handles), Kharvataka, bamboo sticks and iron sticks. In case of opposing the enemy army with chariots the soldiers are supposed to use weapons like stones, clubs, armour, hooks, and spears in plenty; same shall be used to attack the elephants and cavalry; while horses can be used to oppose men. As such men, clad in armour, chariots, men possessing defensive weapons and infantry can oppose the army consisting of all the four constituents (elephants, chariots, cavalry as well as infantry).
Thus Forms of Equipments and Work of Arraying a Rival Force discusses the forms of equipments to be used by both the conqueror and his enemy in opposing each other. This stands as one of the most important work of an invader as this shall exhibit the strength of the conqueror.