A few years back there were not many sources of entertainment. Very few people had TV and Radio in their house as it was quite expensive. The circus was a very popular source of entertainment in those years, So people used to go to watch the circus. In the circus, humans and the animals used to make everyone laugh and show new tricks. However, while doing this they used to harm the animals. So people started opposing it as the animals were being tortured. The opposition was rapidly increasing among the people due to which there were no animals left in the circus. Hence the Madaris had to change their profession.
In Meerut, there was a Madari who had a pair of monkeys. He used to take them and roam in different villages. They used to dance and show different tricks. Children used to love watching them and with excitement they used to clap their hands. When they used to get happy, the madari used to feel that their hard work was successful. After watching the tricks they used to give some money to the Madari. In this way, the Monkeys became the medium of Livelihood for that Madari.
The Government came to know that the madaris had started showing shows on the road. Hence they started a new rule if anyone is found doing this they will have to pay a fine of a certain amount. Due to which the Madari became helpless he didn’t know what to do. So he started working as a Labourer. He was unable to take care of both the monkeys. So, his uncle brought one of the two monkeys home.
Previously his uncle lived in a rental house. A few months later, his uncle started building his own house. Due to which it was difficult for him to keep the monkey. So he told the Madari to take him back but he refused. Hence my uncle left him with us in Moradabad.
When my uncle left the monkey at our home he was 3 to 4 years old. When he came home he had no name. So I started calling him Chiru, my mother, father, and grandmother also started calling him by the same name.
We didn’t have a big house. One storey had 2 rooms, a living room, kitchen, and a bathroom. Outside the house, there was an iron gate. Between the house and the main gate, there was also an empty space. There was a door in the sitting area, which used to open in a lobby equivalent to a kitchen door. There was an empty space in between the second house and the lobby gate. The ladder was kept in the empty space. Above the lobby, a kiosk was made. There was also an empty space behind the house.
Under the stairs, there was a parking space. The roof of the lobby was made up of iron mesh to let the air come inside the house. There was an iron angle which was covered with a sheet of tin to stop the rainwater from entering the house. A water tank was placed over the kiosk.
Uncle told us that Chiru eats everything we eat, but he loves to eat roasted chana and bananas. He told us Chiru is very naughty, so he had to scold him. His point came true. Chiru was a devil. Uncle had given him a separate utensil. A large bowl was given for water. We used to give him food in that utensil. However, he used to eat less but scatter more.
He was very impatient in terms of food, whenever I used to sit to eat the food he used to come and sit next to me and pick the chapati from my plate. In case if I scold him, he used to take the chapati and go from there. He used to eat half and throw the other half here and there. Even if his stomach is full, he used to have a handful of chana’s in his mouth.
Water was given to him in a large bowl. He used to drink less and spread a lot. Even if he is not thirsty, he would climb on the tank placed on the top of the kiosk. He used to open the top lid and put his mouth inside and started drinking water. One day he broke the latch of the lid. Then we tied the lid with the wire. After doing this still he didn’t stop. Now he started swinging on the wire. One day the lid broke and fell on the ground. We had to put in a new lid. The lid was tightened with a thick chain to protect it from Chiru.
Chiru’s mischief was not over here. He started opening the tap to drink water. He used to put his mouth there and drink water. Sometimes he used to keep the tap open and sometimes he used to close the tap so tight that it used to get spoiled, and we had to call the plumber to fix it.
Chiru used to jump from the roof of the kiosk on the iron mesh. Then he used to go back to the kiosk and jump again. Neighbours would get upset with his mischief, Hence mummy used to get angry and scold him. Be Quiet! I will leave you somewhere from where you will not be able to come back. The effect of scolding didn’t last for a long time on Chiru. After a while, he would start his mischief again. The time of scolding depends on the scolder, he was not afraid of me at all. Grandma’s scolding didn’t affect more than five to seven minutes. Mummy’s scolding had a little effect. The biggest effect was the father’s scolding. Chiru did not do mischief in front of him.
Grandma was 100 years old. Due to her age, she was unable to hear. So whenever she spoke to someone, she would speak in a loud voice. One day my grandma was talking to my mother. Don’t know what happened that day to Chiru he went and caught Grandma’s hair plait and dragged her inside the room. Probably he thought grandma was quarreling with Mummy.
On winter days we brought woolen clothes for chiru to avoid the cold. There was a sweater that used to open from the front. He used to wear it till the time he felt cold. As soon as he felt hot, he used to try to remove the sweater while doing this button used to break, and the sweater used to tear. Mummy used to sew the sweater, but still, he would do the same. When he felt cold at night he would come on the double bed and take off the blanket from above me and my mother and put on himself and lie down. He was very fond of cars and bikes. If my father and I would go to the market on the bike he used to jump behind and keep hands on my shoulder and stand on the seat.
Once I was going to my aunt’s house with my father and mother in the car. It was not possible to leave him alone with Grandma, so we took him along with us in the car. On the way, my father stopped the car and went to buy a bottle of water from the shop. You can’t even imagine what happened then? Chiru came into the driving seat and started the car. The car got started. My father returned before he changed the gear. He scolded Chiru a lot. The impact of scolding was there on him for several hours. Whenever I used to get chocolate from the market. I definitely used to give him. However he never used to get satisfied with little chocolate. He would snatch my chocolate, when I asked him to give back the chocolate, he would stare at me to give me a broad smile.
I was very fond of shooting, so I bought an air pistol. It used to look like a real pistol. The air pistol was very big and the weight was about 1 kilogram. We used number 2 bullets. If the birds are close by it can kill them. So, whenever I used to practice aiming at the roof, he used to run away and go down.
It was my Exam Day, so I was sitting and reading a book. Chiru came to me, and he took my glasses and put them on his eyes. Then he snatched my book and started turning the pages. When I told him to give it back to me, he started staring at me. I went to my room and brought the air pistol from my cupboard. Looking at it he got very scared and hid behind my mother. He threw my book and my glasses on me. From behind my mother sometimes he peeped from the left side and sometimes from the right side. Until the time I didn’t keep the air pistol inside the cupboard he stood behind my mother.“You are a coward,” And I laughed at him.
After that, whenever Chiru used to do any mischief, I would run towards the cupboard, looking at it he would immediately hide behind my mother. One day my mother said to him “Now you have become a good child, I will not leave you anywhere.” My school was about 250 meters from the house. So I used to go walking. Maybe exams had started. On regular days the school used to get close by 4.30 pm however as the exams were going on it used to get close by 2.30 pm.
When I went home, I saw a crowd in front of my house. The main gate was closed from within. One of my neighbours jumped from the wall and opened the gate. We all went inside and were shocked to see the scene there. My father had gone to Bijnor for office work. Grandma’s room latch was closed from outside. The cloth was tied to my mother’s mouth, and she was tied to the chair in the bedroom. Chiru was in the pool of blood and suffering from pain. We opened the cloth from my mother’s mouth. She was very nervous.
My mother told us “It was two in the afternoon. The street was deserted due to the scorching heat. Someone rang our doorbell. I went near the main gate. A young man was standing outside.” He said – “He has come to take the electric meter readings.” I opened the gate. The young man came in. He saw the meter and said, “Aunty I am thirsty, can I get a glass of water?” I entered the kitchen to bring the water, he came running from behind and kept his hand and closed my mouth. By then two of his companions who were standing outside entered the house. They locked the door of the main gate from inside.
Two of them had pistols in their hands and the other one had a knife. They closed the door of Grandma’s room from outside. She did not know due to sleep. They caught me and took me to the bedroom. Then one of them spoke loudly – “Tell me where is the key to the locker? Where are the money and the jewellery? He said if you want to be alive then quickly give us the keys.”
When Chiru saw unknown people speaking to me in a loud voice, he pounced on them. Two thieves tied me to the chair. Chiru showed his courage. He pounced and cut one’s wrist with his sharp teeth. The other youth got angry and attacked Chiru with a knife. Chiru got hurt on his left hand. Another thief moved the pistol from my head and pointed the pistol at Chiru. Chiru’s left hand was bleeding. Still, he ran towards Aditi’s wardrobe. He took out the air pistol from the cupboard and pressed the trigger towards them. One of the thieves fired at Chiru with his pistol. Chiru was shot and fell to the ground, and he started suffering.
Hearing the fire when the neighbours started coming towards the gate. One of the neighbours rang the doorbell, after the hearing door bell that the three robbers climbed the stairs inside the main gate and jumped from behind the house, and escaped. Chiru’s life ended. Mummy told me – Chiru was not a coward. The cowards were the ones who fired at that animal. Chiru gave his life for us.
Now he has gone from where no one returns.
Moral of the story: Animals are selfless and can never be selfish. When they see you in danger, they don’t care about their life they will try to save you first. So always love and protect the animals.