A fairy tale with tails!
Deep inside the scenic jungles of India lived a lioness named Kripa along with her three cubs. Two of them were healthy and were named Shakti and Shahsak (meaning power and ruler respectively). The third one named Shatru (meaning enemy) was slightly weaker and demanded attention from Kripa. She too provided special attention to Shatru, which gradually helped him grew healthier, just like his brothers.
Slowly, the cubs neared their adolescence.
One day, Kripa gathered her sons and said, “Very soon you all will be dubbed as adults by Ashwath, the alpha male of our pride. However, not before you clear the assessment.” Kripa further cautioned her cubs, “Remember, you have to work really hard to prove your metal before Ashwath.” She added, “Once you pass the examination, you will have to leave the pride, wander alone in the jungles and build your own pride.”
Thus, began the hunting lessons of the three brothers. Shakti and Shahsak were very sincere in understanding the technique of hunting. However, Shatru, who had already become lethargic due to his mother’s care, never took hunting seriously. Further, the idea of deserting the comforts of his pride never interested the lazy lion.
The judgment day arrived and the three brothers were put thru many rigorous tests by Ashwath. As expected, Shakti and Shahsak passed them with flying colours but Shatru fared badly. Shakti and Shahsak were later declared ‘adults’ by Ashwath and they bid farewell to the lion pride; Shatru was ordered to retake the hunting lessons from Kripa.
To a certain extent, Kripa too was responsible for Shatru’s failure. Her unconditional love for her indolent son forced her to hunt on Shatru’s behalf. Free supply of food made Shatru lazier than before. On the other hand, Shakti and Shahsak became proficient hunters and even maneuvered their own prides. However, they too were dejected to learn about the leisurely advancement in their brother’s hunting skills. The arrogance of Shatru discouraged them from lending a sound advice to him.
Meanwhile, the laid-back and comfortable lifestyle of Shatru hurriedly prompted the other young members of the lion pride to follow his footsteps. Slowly but surely, they too became less enthusiastic and arrogant like Shatru. They started believing that they were the privileged ones, who were protected by the jungle law and they need not work hard to earn their living. This careless attitude of the young lions bothered the older members of the pride very much.
Apocalypse struck the pride one day. Kripa, while on hunting expedition saw a dead lion. A closer look at the lifeless body made her realize that it was Ashwath’s mortal remains. Their dead leader was bitten by a poisonous snake. However, Kripa felt that venom may have killed Ashwath now but the lion within him was killed long back, by the sad state of his pride. The death of Ashwath meant that a new leader had to be chosen to lead the pride. With Shakti and Shahsak out of the pride, there was no one left, who would ably lead the lions.
Kripa, by now, had fully realized her horrible mistake of dishing out concessions to Shatru, her loving son and to the other young lions of the pride. However, she sensed that time to discipline the pride and to amend her mistake had come. The lioness was also determined to bring back the value system, which Ashwath had once implemented. So, to everyone’s surprise she declared herself as the queen of the lion pride. No one in the pride dared to challenge her claim. Probably, the younger lions by then had become too impassive to raise an objection.
Kripa’s character was tested to the core when the new set of rules brought by Kripa to discipline the younger lot led to a revolt within the pride. The revolt was led by none other than Kripa’s son Shatru. The Lion Queen realized that a decisive blow was needed to crush the revolt. Otherwise, it would be too late for her to save her pride. So, without a second thought, she challenged Shatru for an open fight. The foolish lion, under the influence of his pigeon-hearted friends accepted the challenge. However, the rage and the strength of the queen was beyond the control of the timid lion, who collapsed on the ground in no time. The horrendous death of Shatru at the hand of his own mother was a shocker for the young revolting members of the pride, who unconditionally accepted Kripa’s new rules.
The tough measures adopted by the jungle queen gradually resulted into the formation of a formidable pride, which was a fitting tribute to the dead Ashwath.
Dear Reader – This tale is not confined to the jungles but it also unfolds itself in the villages and metros of India.
Kripa, the lioness embodies the education system in India. The undue concessions offered by our education system to the undeserving candidates are well known. The system itself created has many Shatrus, who don’t even end up securing passing marks but end up blocking seats of the deserved ones.
The Shaktis and the Shahsaks of the Indian student fraternity are the one, who quietly do their due diligence and who end up procuring highly paid jobs in the silicon valleys of the world.
Ashwath, the alpha male of the story is an epitome of India’s rich academic values that sadly has no influence over the Shatrus of India’s academia.
The million dollar question: Will any lion queen in our education system, dare to implement tough measures to weed out the Shatrus from the true temples of India – our educational institutions?
Dedicated to the students, who have suffered due to the policies of Indian Education System!