The Lion, Camel, Jackal, Leopard and the Crow| Panchatantra Folk Tales | Great Indian Stories 11

The Lion, Camel, Jackal, Leopard and the Crow| Panchatantra Folk Tales | Great Indian Stories 11


The Lion,The Camel,The Jackal,The Leopard and The Crow A Lion lived in the forest with his friends Leopard, Jackal and Crow. Together they searched and found prey, and the Lion usually made the kill that they then shared together for their Meal. With this arrangement and their close friendship, they were a well-fed and happy group. One day, during their hunt, they saw a Camel grazing and eating Grass in the distance. “What is this tall and strange-looking animal?” said Lion. “Is he of the forest or from some village? I have never seen an animal like this one before”. His friends chimed in,” This animal is a Camel, Dear friend. He is large and well fed, and will make a tasty meal for all of us for a long time”. The Lion roared his displeasure: “What a mean-spirited remark that is, my friends this animal is a guest in our habitat We have a duty to be hospitable to him. Call this camel and assure him of his Safety and bring him to me”. Jackal Leopard and Crow went immediately to do the Lion’s bidding and brought Camel, who they discovered had been Separated from his Caravan and was lost, back with them to the line. “You are welcome here, Dear Camel,” said Lion. “Why would you wish to return to your group and be a beast of burden again? Stay with us in the Jungle and enjoy your freedom and the abundant grass and foliage of the Jungle”. The Camel agreed to stay and the Group lived happily for a while. Then One day, Lion got attacked by a mad Elephant and was seriously injured by the Elephants tusks. Lion was in pain and unable to hunt which also meant that his friends had no food as well. Since it was the Lion who usually found food. For many days the animals were without anything to eat, and Finally Lion called Jackal, Leopard and Crow to his side, and said “Go and find some food for all of us soon Or we will all die of hunger”. The trio of hunters went to find food. But after a long search returned empty-handed. Jackal went to Lion and said: “We have Searched in vain all over the Jungle and found nothing substantial to eat, But there is, after all, a large animal just here who could easily feed us for a long time Why don’t we just kill the Camel and eat him?”. Tired and Hungry though He was, Lion reminded his friends of the promise they had made to Camel and Said that he was not willing to break that trust of his guests and the promise to be a gracious host. Dejected by this decision Jackal asked,”If Camel were to willingly offer himself in sacrifice, Would you be willing to make a meal of him?” The Lion smiled. Soon the animals gathered in front of Lion and Crow first offered himself: “Dear Lion, We are all famished, but there is no food in the forest. Why don’t you eat me, Small though I am, and atleast satisfy a small part of your hunger?” The Lion smiled at his friend and turned him down. The Jackal then spoke up: “Lion, it would be an honor for me to give myself to you in fact if I should feed your hunger I will be blessed in the afterlife, and for this noble deed, I will be welcomed in heaven.” The Lion shook his head and turned down jackals offer as well. Then Leopard came to the front and said, “Dear Lion my friend, I am allowed your animal and your dearest friend if you made a meal of me your hunger would be appeased for some time. Please consider me as your next meal”. Lion smiled feebly but said an emphatic “NO”. Camel was watching all this and thought to himself, “I may not be an old friend, but I have been treated well here So I must make an offer as well since Lion has turned down all the previous offers, I’m sure that he will not make a meal of me”. Kneeling before lion, He said, “Dear friend, I have enjoyed your hospitality for some time and since it is now your hour of need, I wish to offer myself to you as a gift to satisfy your hunger”. As soon as the words left Camel’s mouth, the animals including Lion, Jumped at the Camel and took him up on his offer. With his dying breath, Camel thought to himself, “Alas I should have known never to trust the sweet words of a devious group”.

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