Akbar & Birbal: The Three Burning Questions!

Akbar & Birbal: The Three Burning Questions!

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A Short Story On Jealousy:

Emperor Akhbar had his ‘9 jewels’ and several other ministers in his courtroom. But, he was very fond of one amongst them – Birbal. Birbal was his chief minister and was very witty and intelligent. Because of this, other ministers grew very jealous of Birbal and felt that Emperor Akbar always favoured him over them. Now, this one courtier wanted to take Birbal’s position in the court. He knew he had to outwit Bribal for it, only then he could be the chief minister.

On one fine day, when Akbar praised Birbal in front of the courtier, which made him very angry. Then and there, he challenged Birbal to answer three questions. If Birbal could answer them correctly, the courtier would accept that he was indeed intelligent. If not, he would replace Birbal and become the chief minister. Akbar who was always keen on testing Birbal’s wit readily agreed.

short story on jealousy
The harbinger of failure | Image: File Image
The three questions were –

1. How many stars are there in the sky

2. Where is the center of the Earth

3. How many crows are there in the kingdom

So, as decided, Akbar calls for Birbal and asks him these 3 questions. He adds that if he failed to answer these questions correctly, he would have to resign as the chief minister. Birbal accepted the challenge and thought for a while.

To answer the first question he bought a hairy sheep, and said, “There are as many stars in the sky, as there are on this sheep. And if my dear friend wants to verify this, he is welcome to measure it himself”.

For the second question, he drew some lines on the ground and bore an iron rod in it, saying, “This is the center of the Earth. The courtier is can measure it for himself if he has any doubts”.

And lastly, for the third question, Birbal said, there are exactly 1,000789,000 crows in the kingdom. If there are more, it means that there are relatives visiting these crows from other kingdoms. If there are less, then some crows from our kingdom might have gone to other kingdoms to visit their relatives.

The courtier was stumped! While Emperor Akbar and all other ministers burst out laughing! Akbar appreciated Bribal’s witty responses and gave him 1000 gold coins as a reward. Birbal gladly accepted the gift and mockingly smiled at the jealous courtier, whose anger knew no bounds!

Think Right Tips: 

  • One should not move ahead in life by stepping on someone’s shoulder
  • Jealousy is not enough to achieve goals

Read more: Feeling Blue? Make A Rainbow Out Of It!

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