Durga's first chronological appearance is in The Hutt Gambit, the second installment of A.C. Crispin's Han Solo Trilogy. The young Hutt is the heir of Clan Besadii, a rival family to Jabba's Clan Desilijic. After Durga's father Aruk is assassinated on Jabba's orders, Durga assumes control of the family. This is a shock to Jabba and his aunt Jiliac, who assumed Aruk's murder would throw Clan Besadii into chaos.
As the new leader of Besadii, Durga enlists the help of Black Sun Prince Xizor to track down his father's killer. Xizor gathers evidence to prove Desilijic's guilt. As such, Durga challenges Jiliac to a duel to the death. Jabba coldly stands back, seeing either death as a victory for him—Durga's fall would be the death of a rival, but JIliac's death would give Jabba control of Clan Desilijic. In the end, the elderly Hutt is killed by Durga. Later, during the Battle of Ylesia, Durga hires bounty hunter Boba Fett to kill Desilijic's hired assassin, former Besadii employee Teroenza.
Durga was first introduced in Kevin J. Anderson's Darksaber, the second installment of the unofficial "Callista" trilogy. By this point, Jabba and Xizor are both dead and smuggler chief Talon Karrde has gone legit, which places Durga as head of the criminal empire. Some time before this novel, set eight years after Return of the Jedi, Durga gets his hands on the Galactic Empire's Death Star technology and kidnaps the Death Star's engineer Bevel Lemelisk, a man who was killed several times by Emperor Palpatine. Through this, the Hutt manages to construct his own Death Star, which he dubs the "Darksaber," due to its physical appearance to a Jedi lightsaber.
Though the New Republic took measures to prevent Durga's attempt at power, they ultimately failed in their objective, and agent Crix Madine was executed by Durga himself. It was Durga's own cheapness that became his undoing, for his inept workers never successfully made the superweapon, so the Darksaber was destroyed in an asteroid field, killing Durga and all of his underlings. The Hutt Empire itself would eventually be brought down by the extragalactic Yuuzhan Vong.