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Hitopadesha Tales – The Wily Jackals

When a plan to claim power goes awry, a conspiracy is afoot to overthrow something precious! Read this story of deception and deviltry below!

Once upon a time, there was a bull who loved to graze by roaming wherever he pleased. It so happened that one day he lost his way and could not go back home. So, he continued to search for a good place and after finding one, he grazed to his heart’s content. As he was content, he started to bellow loudly and soon the entire forest echoed with his bellowing.

~At the same time in another part of the forest

A lion was walking towards the river and he heard the bellowing. He was the king of the jungle and was known for his bravery. But he had never heard such a loud sound before and hence he was terrified. So, the lion abandoned his plan of drinking water at the river and went back to his cave. Meanwhile, two jackals were seeing this from a distance and they soon decided to use this fear of the king to their advantage.

They went to the lion’s cave and asked him why he came back without drinking water. The lion explained that it was because of the loud sound that he had heard. The jackals then told the king that they would investigate the matter and would bring whoever is responsible in front of him. The lion agreed and the 2 jackals went to find the animal that made the loud sound.

They went in the direction of the sound and found the animal to be a normal bull. They then took the bull to the lion and after this, the most unexpected thing happened! The lion and the bull became thick friends and soon the lion paid no heed to the 2 jackals. Now, the jackals had wanted to become closer to the king by pleasing him and they did not like it one bit when they were sidelined and so they made another plan. This time, they planned something more evil and deceptive in nature.

The 2 jackals went to the lion and said that the bull was speaking ill about him behind his back. The lion knew that this was a trick and did not pay much attention to what the jackals said. But however, the jackals had come more prepared and they said that if he was not careful, the bull would kill him and that they had done their best to warn him. Adding to this, they said that if he sees his friend charging towards him angrily, then he should definitely be careful and kill him, in order to save himself. With this, the 2 jackals left the lion’s cave.

The 2 jackals now went to the bull and told him that the lion was not to be trusted. The bull too did not believe the jackals at first. But the jackals used all the tricks they had and finally managed to convince him that the lion was a wicked friend. They further added that if he ever saw the lion growling at him, then he must put his own life first and kill the lion. The bull could not believe his ears and soon he surrendered to his emotions. The bull immediately started to run towards the lion’s cave.

The 2 jackals took a shortcut to the lion’s cave and told him that they had received information, saying that the bull was angrily charging towards them. The lion was beside himself with rage as he realised that what the jackals had said, had come true. In his anger, he began to growl with his chest huffing and puffing and as the bull came closer and closer, he was able to see that the lion was growling as the jackals had said.

Both of them had been successfully manipulated by the 2 jackals. The lion and the bull confronted each other and after a bloody fight, the lion killed the bull. As a reward for saving his life, the lion appointed the 2 jackals as ministers.

Moral – One should not blindly believe what others have to say, especially if it is about someone we trust and love.

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