The Cunning Stork and the Wise Crab

This is a story from the Panchatantra.

In olden days, there lived a stork in a large pond in a village. The stork was very happy as he had plenty of fish to hunt about and also other varieties like frogs and crabs.

As the years went by, the stork became very weak and old and was no longer as agile as he used to be and the young fishes were very fast that he could not hunt like before and even had to starve on some days. The stork was worried and he racked his brains until he found a cunning plan to provide himself ample food. So, the next day, he went near the bank of the pond and simply stood on one leg putting on a very sad expression. He did not even attempt to catch the fish which went near him to tease him. The fish and other creatures were surprised and slowly the oldest frog went near the stork bravely and asked him why he was so sad and forlorn.The stork pretended not to hear and after continuous pestering by the frog said with a deep sigh,” Hmmmm, I do not have words to tell about the grief which is going to befall all of us. In the next month, the king has ordered this pond to be closed with mud and made into a field and the king is going to deepen a pond which is already there in the other corner of this village. I am so sad at the fate that will meet you fellows. Hmmmm….”

The word quickly spread to all the fish and frogs and crabs that their fate was going to be sealed in a few days. All the innocent creatures believed the stork and the next day, the frog went again to the stork and said “Brother Stork, how can we save ourselves from death?” The stork pretended to think for a long time. He hummed and hawed and finally said “I know the way to the other pond I told you about. If you want I can carry you in my beak in batches and leave you in the other pond. But I need rest in between as I am very old. I can carry you fellows every alternate day if it is Ok for you. ” The frog and fishes and crabs were relieved. How nice of the stork to help them like this in time of crisis. They readily agreed for this and every other day the stork would carry four or five fishes in his beak and leave the pond. When he came back for another batch he would say how the fish were so… happy in the new pond. What actually was happening was that the stork was carrying the fish to a rock and eating them up happily. This went on for some time and one day the big wise crab felt that it was his turn and so the stork also felt that Β he wanted to eat crab meat for a change. He decided that he would eat the crab alone that day as he was big and fat and therefore told the crab to clutch to his neck with his claws. The crab did so and when they were half way through, the crab asked the stork on the whereabouts of the new pond. To his surprise the Stork laughed aloud and said ” New Pond?? What rubbish? No Pond, only dinner for me. See the rock down there. That is my dining table Ha ha Ha ha haa!!” The crab was shocked . What he saw on the rock were the bones of all the fishes the stork had carried all those days. The crab could see his fate and quickly he thought and what did he do? He tightened his clutch on the stork’s neck till the stork fell down dead. The crab traced his way back slowly to the pond and told the fishes and frogs of his adventure. They felt sorry for their friend fishes who were dead but nevertheless happy that they could live without a worry in the same pond.

They all lived happily ever after.

1 Comment


  1. A really good story….. The stork really deserves it… πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰

    Reply

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