In a small village near Varanasi, there lived a rich man named Dhanilal. He belonged to a very rich family. He was the only son of his rich parents. But they were kind and generous to the poor and needy villagers. Dhanilal was very rude and would argue with his parents to not offer any help to the villagers. The family had a fleet of servants. Ramu was one of them. Ramu’s father had dedicated his life to serve Dhanilal’s parents. Dhanilal and Ramu grew up together. But the rich kid Dhanilal, never liked being treated as an equal to the servant’s kid.
Years later, Dhanilal’s parents died leaving him in charge of the wealth and family business. The mansion lost its luster after his parent’s death. By now Dhanilal was married to Indu, the daughter of a rich merchant from the neighboring village. She was very kind hearted and the villagers had high regards for her. One busy morning, Indu asked Ramu to fetch some fruits from the market. He hurriedly took the stairs and in utter haste missed a step. He had a bad fall. He sprained his leg and his back was all bruised badly. The other servants rushed to pick him up. Indu heard Ramu crying in pain. Dhanilal witnessed the entire episode and shouted out loudly to Indu. “No need to call for the doctor.” yelled Dhanilal. “I don’t have so much money to treat this fool. He will be just piling up on us for all his personal help and his treatment will be a big hole in my pocket. Instead just throw him out of the house and let me be at peace.” Indu pleaded him to not to be so ruthless. But Dhanilal ensured that the poor guy was thrown out. Ramu begged and cried for mercy. But Dhanilal wanted to get rid of Ramu. He dragged Ramu out of the house and shut the mansion doors on his face. That night, Ramu slept outside the gate of the house for a long time and he was gone before dawn. Nobody knew where he went.
It was almost a year since Ramu was evicted. Indu did try to search him but nobody knew about his whereabouts. It was the annual function of the temple and lots of saints, priests and followers flocked to be a part of the celebration. Then came a sage with a group of disciples. His radiant face attracted the villagers and very soon he became popular for his sermons. He would meditate under the banyan tree and the villagers would offer him with fruits. Indu too wanted to meet this sage and seek the blessings of the pious soul. The snobbish Dhanilal accompanied Indu to meet the sage but ridiculed her faith in front of all the villagers. He yelled and said,“ You foolish woman ! Taking blessings of this mendicant will not bring me riches. How dare you offer this big basket to a beggar without my permission? Take it away and dare if you come here again”. Indu was totally upset and the villagers were furious on the unruly behavior of Dhanilal. Dhanilal dragged her home and threatened her not to step out of the house without seeking his permission.
On that very night, tragedy befell on Dhanilal. A robber sneaked in the mansion and broke open the locker. He looted the valuables and money from the locker and disappeared before the guard could raise an alarm. The guard was dozing off in his chair and the mansion gate was left wide open. After some time, Dhanilal walked up to the kitchen to get some water to drink. He sensed something wrong and rushed to the treasury room. He was aghast to see that he was robbed. “Indu! Wake up we are doomed. ” The panicky Dhanilal shouted out loudly. But since he was so scared and nervous, his trembling voice did not reach the fast asleep Indu. With sheer haste he took the staircase. He hurriedly got down but skipped a step. He had a terrible fall. He moaned in pain and called for help. The servants rushed to his rescue. Indu rushed to see outside and found her husband howling in pain. She rushed to help the others pick Dhanilal. He very exasperatedly told her about the robbery. Indu was all upset, grief stricken to know that the family wealth was gone. She called for the local healer and pacified Dhanilal. Days passed by but Dhanilal did not show any signs of recovery. Lots of money would be required to take him to the city hospital but the penniless Dhanilal had nothing in hand. Indu decided to do something about this. She went in search of the sage and was pleased to see him meditating under the neem tree. She touched his feet and narrated her misery to him. She said, “O learned one !please forgive my husband and me for being so rude to you. I beg you to please come home and offer him your blessings too. He has understood that it is not money that stays forever. He is a changed man now and waiting for your divine power to help him recover”. The pious sage agreed to escort her home. Dhanilal was happy as well as ashamed to see the sage. He apologized for his rude behavior and asked the sage to forgive him. “Forgive me for I am ashamed of my deeds and my greed has caused a big loss to me. Today even if I am broken the poor servants who served us for so many years still choose to be a part of our misery and help us sail through this tough time. Cure me O sage so that I do not die in regret and misery.” The sage smiled and hugged the weak and frail Dhanilal. With a calm head he said, “Sethji, you were drowned in your riches and forgot about your parent’s kind deeds. It is their kind deeds that people are good to you and staying with you even in your bad times. It was their kindness that I decided to teach you a lesson after you threw me out and wanted to repay their good deeds by making you realize that what you were doing is wrong.” Dhanilal all confused looked closely to the sage and lo! it was none other than Ramu! Yes, he was his very own servant friend. The day when Ramu was evicted from the house, he was rescued by a priest who happened to pass by the mansion. He saw Ramu lying in pain and decided to take care of him. He gave him all the rest and medical help and engaged him as his disciple and taught him life lessons too.
After narrating all this the sage stood up hugged Dhanilal and said, “Sethji, your money is safe with me. It was my disciple who robbed you and this was the only way I thought you would understand your mistake.”
Ramu handed over the gunny bag of money and jewelry to Dhanilal and told Indu to take care of him. Dhanilal realized his mistake and held Ramu’s hand and said, “Ramu, please don’t leave me and go. I need you. You have been with me since childhood and now please give me an opportunity to do good to you. “Ramu agreed to stay with Dhanilal. Indu too was happy that her husband had changed and now he like his parents would carry the legacy of being kind to the poor and needy.