The king of the jungle, the almighty Lion, was in great tension. He has called in his den palace in Hiranya Forest kingdom a very secret meeting of a few selected Ministers and top police officials. Among them were only select meat-eating animals like tiger, leopard, jackal, shepherd dog, panther and bulldog. They came to Lion’s den eager to know why the mighty Lion king has hurriedly called a secret meeting in his den.
“Dear friends, this is our first most secret meeting. You all know that we face some very challenging problems. A great challenge is that the number of vegetarian animals is increasing by leaps and bounds. They do pose a great threat to our existence. Against their ever increasing number and unity, we are becoming helpless!
“A few days back I saw a family member, an old lion running after a calf of a wild buffalo. But the mother buffalo and her companions together chased the old lion and killed him by hitting with their horns and throwing him into a close by deep pit so that no one might see even the carcass. I was really frightened seeing the anger and the pride of the buffalos in doing away an old monarch of the jungle. It was good that I was hidden in the grass on a nearby hillock.”
“Yes. Yes. You have hit the nail on the head! You have told us the truth. We knew that the old lioness queen was worried that the lion has been lost for the last few days. Now we know what happened to our grandfather lion,” a few members of the secret meeting said in unison.
“Then, dear friends, we have to do something to control the unbridled growth of all the vegetarian animals who oppose us. Let us do one thing. Let us take our old and sick lions, tigers, weak and useless lionesses, tigresses, jackals, leopards and their good for nothing offspring and sacrifice them for the success of our plans and programmes. We take them on a pilgrimage to the shrine of our family goddess ‘Aranya Devi’ in the Aranya Forest Sanctuary and sacrifice them there by secretly starting a forest fire. But no one except we present here should know about this our most secret plan.”
When the king looked around, he saw the desired effect on the faces of everyone present. They shook their heads in approval. The mighty Lion king continued, “Now you all listen very carefully. One of us should come forward to start a fire in the Aranya forest sanctuary. We need a suicide volunteer to sacrifice his life to save our races and tribes. We will honour him as a martyr and build a memorial for him and look after his family well by meeting all needs and assure his family all financial security. But remember that all these things are done according to a well-planned manner in at most secrecy.
“When we get the news of the fire, destruction and death of our beloved ones in Aranya forest sanctuary, we will meet here again to plan our further course of action. But no one knows how and where the fire started. Our animal population will know only that very many lions, tigers, leopards, panthers including their women and offspring on a holy pilgrimage have died in the fire. Only very few animals were able to run away and escape the fire.”
After the meeting of King Lion and his select ministers and officials, the news of a wild fire spread far and wide. According to newspapers and television channels in a hot afternoon a jungle fire engulfed the entire Aranya forest sanctuary. Many pilgrims including women and children returning from Aranya goddess shrine perished in the fire. Only very few who were able to run away escaped the tragedy.
In the night of the day of great fire the king of the jungle and his select advisors met in the king’s den palace again and decided to proclaim throughout Hiranya kingdom that some vegetarian animals of a particular race have put fire to Aranya forest to take revenge against the meat-eating animals. Then, they also spoke about annihilating most of the vegetarian animals so that they would not even think of such heinous crimes. So we should do our job in a very planned and orderly manner.
Intervening in the deliberations the defense minister bulldog said, “Your majesty, what you say is right. In out hunting actually only one particular race of animals poses serious challenge and is a threat to us. So we need not kill and destroy the animals like donkeys, sheep, goats and rabbits. We need only to annihilate one particular, ever growing race of animals.”
Approving the opinion of the defense minister the king said, “What our defense minister bulldog said is right. Let us eliminate one particular race of animals which does not cooperate with us but challenges us. Let us do it methodically according to our plan. So we will decide who will do what and where. So think about these things and we shall meet again tomorrow morning here. When you come tomorrow please come prepared by surveying our target group. Please find out who live where in our kingdom. Collect their addresses and other details. But do everything in at most secrecy that no one should even smell anything about our plan.
On the next day morning the select ministers and officials of the Lion king reported, “Your Majesty, we have surveyed and collected the names and addresses of our target race of animals, which neither support or nor collaborate with us.”
The king Lion of Hiranya kingdom was mightily pleased. His select ministers and top officials have done an excellent job as planned. So congratulating everyone the king said, “Dear friends, I am very happy to know that you have all done a fine job. Now there should be no delay in doing our assigned jobs from today. Be clear that we want to annihilate only one particular race of animals which opposes and challenge us. Now let us divide the work. Collecting arms and distributing them are assigned to our defense minister bulldog. But we should do our jobs staying behind the curtain.
“As you all know, the whole animal kingdom is terribly enraged with the savage fire and with many deaths of the meat-eating animals in Aranya forest sanctuary. We can take advantage of the situation. Be courageous and enterprising in the execution of our plans. Victory is ours.
“Friends, I want to talk some personal matters with our Home Minister Shepherd Dog, Intelligent Chief Jackal and the IGP Tiger. Except these three you all may go and start to execute our plan.”
When everyone has gone on their assigned mission the Mighty King said to his specially trusted lieutenants, “Friends, this is our third secret meeting. But I feel that our special plan of annihilating a race does not seem to convince our friend, wolf!”
“Yes, your majesty. I too have doubts about the trustworthiness of our friend, wolf. I do think that wolf will not whole heartily take part in our resolve to eliminate our enemy.”
“That is true. I also feel similarly. If our friend wolf betrays us and reveals our plan to the public, then we will be punished under the law of plotting a crime against the nation. We will be thrown into prison. We may also be given life-imprisonment or even death penalty,” the intelligence chief Jackal said.
“Yes. The assessment of the intelligent chief is to the point. This situation is so terrible that we should do something about it. This is a life and death question for us! We should do away with him and save our plan of annihilating one race from our kingdom. The Bible says, “It is better for you to let one man die for the people instead of the whole nation destroyed,” the intelligent chief Jackal said.
“The intelligent chief Jackal’s opinion is very true. But do not worry. In our forest kingdom as well as in our neighbourhood there are some very cruel mafia dons and terrorists who are known to us. We will give them appropriate reward for eliminating the betrayer without any trace,” said the Police chief Tiger.
“I agree with our police chief. He is right. Do not worry about our appropriate reward. I am prepared to give crores of rupees to any underworld mafia dons for the job,” the king Lion expressed his willingness to pay any amount.
“Then, your majesty, be assured that your job is done. Now leave everything to me. We will do away without anyone suspecting anything wrong,” said the intelligent chief Jackal.
“Then, let us go. Let us all do our assigned task. Our ruling party has declared a strike in the whole Hiranya kingdom in memory of the terrible death of our fellow animals. The ruling party’s declaration of strike gives us the golden chance to execute our plans,” the king said.
Hearing the terrible news of the fire and death of many animals in Hiranya kingdom, the mass media and reporters from around the world descended on Hiranya kingdom. The flying journalist birds like eagle, crows, kingfisher, parrots and doves from countries like Germany, France, England and cities like Delhi, Chennai, Pune, Mumbai and Kolkata descended on Hiranya kingdom. First of all, most of these journalists and other media persons visited the Aranya sanctuary. They were all heartbroken to see the death and destruction of animals and the entire forest land.
On the next day the flying journalists and TV reporters travelled the countryside affected by the death and destruction and contacted the local journalists and writers. Thus they made an effort to get comprehensive idea of the whole situation. They felt that the day after the fire Hiranya forest is peaceful; but it was like the peace of a cemetery. It was like a volcano before its eruption. Besides the king Lion’s ruling party had declared a strike in the whole animal kingdom.
On the third day when the news persons switched on the BBC they got fresh news of fire breaking out in many part of the kingdom and about many riots and armed attacks and death of animals from one particular race.
According to the king spokesperson Shukraraj the mighty Lion has sought help from neighbouring countries and armed force has come to stop the riot and blood bath. But from reliable local resources the journalists and other media personnel have learnt that the king has indeed got the armed forces for publicity; but in fact, they have not been deployed by providing them with transportation.
On the other hand, the mighty Lion has given specific verbal instructions to his trusted officials and police chiefs. The people’s anger will flare up for revenge after the Aranya forest fire and massacre. They should allow the people to give vent to their anger without any control or obstruction. Still there are peace and tranquility in a few pockets like Motinagar, Rajnagar and Mariamnagar. Their area police chiefs have successfully stopped the rioters. The ferocious animals were prevented from their nefarious activities.The IPS chiefs diligently maintained law and order under their jurisdictions. True to nature the cunning king Lion ‘suitably’ awarded them transferring to ineffective posts or far away inconvenient places.
When the journalists and other news media persons visiting many towns and cities as well as villages they saw small and big crowds of people with deadly weapons attacking and killing pre-determined targets of vegetarian animals and destroying their dens, caves and huts and their means of livelihood. Slogans like ‘strike’ and ‘kill the terrorists’, ‘cut to pieces the enemies’ rent the air. As frenzied mob moved around everything like caves, nests, places of business and relaxation were destroyed. Many vegetarian animals, which came on the way of the mob, disappeared without a trace!
The roving journalists and other media animals saw some small crowds of tigers and of bulldogs went to place to place and forcefully closed everything. A journalist saw the leader of a communal mob with deadly weapons speak on his mobile and then going to attack and put fire to a nearby hotel of which only one partner was their target. With the burning of the hotel, a readymade cloths shop also got consumed by fire. But before the shop got fire many in the attacking mob looted the shop and took away many valuable things including cloths. Meanwhile a jeep with a few police dogs of the ruling king Lion’s party passed by the burning hotel and shop as if nothing has happened there!
It was not difficult for the journalist birds and other media animals by the third day to discover that a shrewd mind was behind the pogrom of a particular vegetarian race. According to the king’s spokesperson the monkey army successfully maintained peace and tranquility in the whole Hiranya kingdom. Peace prevailed in sensitive areas where the monkey force has staged flag march.
But, in reality, in the whole of Hiranya kingdom genocide went on for three days without any obstruction from the king’s police force or the civic authorities. So much so the whole animal population began to distrust one another. The target race of the genocide suffered unimaginable calamities and deaths in thousands. Those who escaped the destruction and death gathered in thousands in refugee camps.
The Emperor of the neighbouring kingdom who sent the monkey force advised the Lion king to maintain law and order with good governance as Hiranya forest kingdom was once the abode of god Ram and as such is a holy kingdom. But the advice of good governance had no effect on the Lion king and his accomplishers; and the pogrom continued without any interference but tacit and not so tacit support from the ruling party and the government.
But the Lion king and his supporters went on advertising far and wide that peace and tranquility prevailed not only in Aranya forest but in the whole of Hiranya kingdom. A publicity blitz was launched by the lion king extolling the progress and development of the whole of Hiranya kingdom. Half-truths and fancied statistics were given wide publicity to show that Hiranya kingdom was far ahead in development than all other neighbouring kingdoms.
Half-truths and outright lies were published not only in Hiranya kingdom but also in neighbouring kingdoms as well as in foreign lands. But the journalists and other media animals saw on their own eyes, and voluntary activists like Horses and Rajhans confirmed, that in the Hiranya kingdom armed attack and robbery and destructions against a particular race are going on without anyone attempting to prevent them.
Even after ten years Aranya sanctuary fire and its aftermath the surviving victims of the genocide in the whole Hiranya kingdom did not receive justice under the Lion king. But thanks to the persistent efforts of some social activists and voluntary agencies a few headstrong perpetuators of the genocide and destruction were not only given life imprisonment but also many closed cases were reopened for proper investigation anew.
The knowledgeable sources say that in the course of time all criminals of Hiranya forest kingdom and the perpetuators of the pogrom will be brought to book by the law of Hiranya forest kingdom. Or the international court could catch up with the criminals and perpetuators of the crime against humanity.
As the Chinese proverb says, “the one who digs a pit falls into it”. The Bible also says, “All who take the sword will die with the sword.” Then, the Indian culture has it and every good will animal knows that in the end Satyamev Jayate, “Truth will win”.