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Manoj Das

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The King and the Squirrel

Once upon a time, there was a king who was very proud of his matchless position. He was young, well-read and intelligent and none of the youths of his kingdom equaled him in strength or valour. Moreover, he was the richest man in the kingdom. One day, while strolling in his garden, he said to his wise, old minister, I...

Ratha Yatra

Ratha Yatra Festival
Excerpts from the book "Festivals of India" Published by National Book Trust, India.Festivals bring large numbers of people together in a spirit of joy or devotion, or both. But there is one festival that combines joy and devotion with physical rigour. This is the Car Festival of Lord Jagannath at Puri, in Orissa, popularly known as the Rath...

Two Girls and a Lotus

On top of a three-hundred-foot hill was a quaint old temple. A hunched, old man performed puja here. Enshrined in the centre of the temple was a beautiful idol. Usha and Lalita, two good friends, enjoyed talking to the kindly temple priest and watching him adorn the beautiful idol with multicoloured flowers.Often in the morning, Usha and Lalita climbed...

The Mango Charm

The Mango Charm
A wandering youth once met Bholu, an illiterate villager, who knew how to perform a miracle. Everyday Bholu would go into the forest, stand under a mango tree and utter a charm. The tree would immediately become heavy with fruit. The next moment the mangoes would ripen and then they would fall to the ground. Bholu would collect them,...

Gems of Indian Literature

Excerpts from 'Books Forever' Written by Manoj Das Published by National Book Trust, New DelhiIndia's literary past is indeed great. It's a known fact that many of the parables of the Bible, the fables of Aesop of Greece, the folktales collected by the Grimm brothers of Germany and the tales retold by Hans Andersen of Denmark had their origin in India.We...

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