The charming village, Gopa was surrounded by vast meadows marked by lush green grass and a range of hills on the horizon. The River Yamuna cut through the valley and crept into a forest not far from the village. While the cowherds of Gopa freely moved about in the meadows with their cattle, the elders often went into the forest for gathering wood or fruit.
It was a quiet dusky hour. All of a sudden, a shriek was heard and several people came out to the streets. They found a boy screaming that a tiger had pounced on one of his cows and had dragged it away into the forest. The villagers decided to inform the king immediately. Before long, the chieftain Nanda , armed with a sword and accompanied by several men carrying bows and arrows reached the spot. From the paw-marks left on the sands, they knew that the beast was big indeed!
The dense forest was spread over a large area and it was difficult to trace the beast. In a few days, it became clear that not one but a number of tigers were stalking the cattle of Gopa. There was nothing surprising in a leopard or a hyena straying into the village. But a pack of tigers marking the locality was unheard of.
Before Vasudev left Devaki ?s eighth child with Yashoda , his other wife, Rohini, and her son had come over to Nanda?s house. On the auspicious day when the two sons were to be named, Vasudev sent his priest to Gopa. The priest studied the horoscopes of the boys and named Rohini?s son Balarama , and Devaki?s son
Nanda now understood the mystery of the tigers attacking Gopa. Whenever the divine took a human birth, the evil forces grew restless and tried their best to harm the incarnation. The tigers were spurred by such forces to fall upon Gopa ? the home of the Godchild. Nanda?s apprehension was strengthened by an incredible event.