Simha, the Lion King, had grown old and feeble. Even in such a state he once fought an elephant and
sustained deep wounds all over his body. His faithful minister Chaturath, the Jackal, was by his side all
the time. Since Simha always gave the leftovers of his hunt to Chaturath, his inability to hunt for food
and the lack of proper food had rendered Chaturath weak. Chaturath addressed Simha,” “My Lord, I have
been hungry for days and my dry throat is troubling me, so I can hardly drag myself around,. Do something
for our food.
At this Simha said, “0 wise one, use your wisdom to trap an animal which I can hunt even in my feeble state.”
Chaturath set out for the nearby village where he spotted Gardabh, the washerman’s donkey.
“Uncle Gardabh, what a sorry state you are in,” said Chaturath. “I see bones sticking out of your body.
Are you not well?”
“Dear nephew,” replied Gardabh, “the washerman loads my back with heavy loads and gives me rioting
to eat. I am living on this dry grass and thorny bushes.”
“I did not know of your pitiable condition. If you shall come with me I will lead you to a grass field
near the forest. The lush green grass there would soon turn you into a vigorous, healthy youth”, the
wily jackal enticed Gardabh. At this Gardabh hesitated and then agreed. Soon Chaturath played
his last card, “What’s more there are three she- donkeys who live in the grassfields. They have grown
strong and healthy feeding on the luscious grass and now wish to marry a donkey from the village. So I am
here for the same purpose.”
This was enough to entice Gardabh, He happily followed Chaturath to the forest with dreams of
emerald green grass and beautiful brides she donkeys.
When Simha saw Chaturath guiding Gardabh to him, his hunger could not withstand it. He jumped
at Gardabh with full force and haste. His hasty jump made him plunge over the donkey’s back to the other
side. Gardabh was terrified at the sound of Simha’s fall and was even more horrified at his looks. He soon
ran away leaving Chaturath in a puzzled state.
“My Lord, impatience is no virtue. Now you have scared away a good catch. I will bring him back but please control yourself before you jump.” So saying this Chaturath left for renewed enticement for Gardabh.
On seeing Chaturath, Gardabh, exclaimed, “A fine grass-field you led me to and what was that ferocious and large creature I saw?”
`Oh, that was one of the she-donkeys who has grown healthy eating the delicious green grags. She had only attempted to embrace you and you ran away in panic. Now she has vowed to marry only you or she will fast till death.
This time Simha was ready to jump at Gardabh ccurately and his sharp claws and teeth killed the foolish donkey immediately.
Having killed Gardabh Simha felt like having a wash in the nearby stream before settling to a hearty meal. In his absence* Chaturath ate Gardabh’s ears and heart. On his return Simha was enraged to see the dead donkey with his missing ears and no heart. As he accused Chaturath of partaking of his hunt without his permission, Chaturath said, “My Lord, Gardabh was born with no ears nor any heart. That is why he came here, saw you with his own eyes, ran away in panic yet returned to meet his end.”
Simha was convinced by Chaturath’s argument and proceeded to have his meal.
Avarice is the root cause of all evil.