Once upon a time a crane used to live close to a pond. The pond was full of various types of fishes and crabs. The crane used to feed on them by catching them every day. After a long time passed the crane grew older and became weaker. It was hard for the crane to hunt in his old age because he was not agile enough. He became so weak that fish use to swim around him but he was unable to catch them. The crane became weaker and weaker as the days passed and then the crane decided to think of a different way to get his food. The crane decided to devise a plan to catch his food.
One day he went to the pond without any intention of catching any fish and looked sad. Fishes and crabs saw the crane not trying to catch them for long time. This made them curious and they asked the crane what was the matter. The crane told them that he was very sad because all of them were going to die. This made all the animals of the pond worried and they asked why would they all die. The crane replied that some people from near the village were going to fill the pond and use this land for growing crops. He further said that he could save them because there was another pond at a distance which couldn’t be covered by land. But he said that he could carry few fishes at a time and would make one trip per day because he was old and weak and could not make multiple trips.
The animals of the pond agreed with him because he portrayed himself as their savior and did not show any interest in eating them. He started taking few fishes in his beak every day and at a little distance behind the rock he used to kill and eat them. Several days passed and crane grew stronger, and then one day the crab asked the crane to carry him to the other pond. The crane thought it would be a good idea to try some new food though it would be hard to kill as compared to fish.
The crane agreed and took the crab in his beak and started taking him away. After some time the crab got suspicious and asked how far the other pond was. The crane was blind in his greed to eat the crab and replied “I am not taking you to the pond; instead I am going to kill and eat you,” without realizing that crab was better equipped to defend himself compared to fishes earlier. Crab suddenly tightened his claw on crane’s neck and bled him to death. Somehow crab managed to reach the pond and narrated his experience with the rest of the pond animals. (Pradeep Vyawahare, India, 2016)
Moral: Excess greed is harmful.