Honesty and its Reward

RAMU was well-known in the village as an honest milkman. He had two sons, Surya and Chandra. Time and again, Ramu used to tell them, “Look here, never deceive or cheat anyone. Honest labour alone gives you real peace and happiness in life”. One day, Ramu severely scolded Surya for not taking the cattle for grazing. Surya felt so badly hurt that he left home, determined never to return.

Old Ramu would feel worried and miserable whenever he remembered Surya. A few days before his death, Ramu said to Chandra, “My dear son, try your best to find out Surya, your brother. You can recognise him by the big, black scar on his forehead. Out of the ten buffaloes we have, give him five as his share.” After Ramu’s death, Chandra used to go to every fair and ‘mela’ in the nearby villages, hoping to find Surya there. But all his efforts were in vain.

One day, Chandra was returning home with the buffaloes after their grazing. On the way, he saw a stranger in the village sitting under a tree. As Chandra came close to him, he was surprised to find a big, black scar on his forehead. He recognised him as his brother. But he was very much pained to see him in soiled and torn clothes.  So, he almost wept as he said, “Oh brother Surya, why are you leading a miserable life like this? Come home with me. Take five out of the ten buffaloes father has left for us and lead a happy life selling milk and butter.” Surya went home with his brother. But he was silent all the time. After having food together, Chandra spread a big carpet, and soon, both were fast asleep.

Next morning, Chandra woke up and, to his surprise, found that Surya had left with the five buffaloes. Then, a doubt arose in his mind, “Why should Surya run away with the buffaloes? I hope, I have not been cheated by a rogue.  After some thinking he consoled himself, “I have been honest and done just as Pitaji advised me. God be witness to it. Why, then, should I worry?”

After a few days, a nice bullock-cart stopped in front of Chandra’s door. As Chandra peeped out, he saw a person with a big, black scar on his forehead coming towards him. But now, he was quite decently dressed and looked like a rich man.  He came close to Chandra and said, with a smile, “Oh brother, didn’t you recognise me?” But Chandra replied in a sad tone, “Brother, I do recognise you. But I have committed a grave mistake. Two weeks ago, I gave away your five buffaloes to someone else, mistaking him for you. But then, I don’t want you to suffer for my folly. I will give you the five buffaloes which are mine.”

Embracing his brother, Surya said, “My dear Chandra, you have not committed any mistake. I myself had come at that time dressed as a poor man, to test your honesty. Indeed, you are as honest as our beloved Pitaji himself. By his blessing, I too have built up a good business in fruits and vegetables. It has made me a rich man. Now, I have a big house in the town, this bullock cart and a small fruit-garden as well. I have come to take you to the town, to stay with me. I have purchased a small room in the market for you where you can start a dairy and sell milk and sweets.”

Both the brothers then went in, hand-in-hand, and, standing before their father’s small photograph said, “Pitaji, you taught us to be always honest. Indeed, we are very fortunate to have learnt it from you. Today it is our honesty that is giving us peace and joy, which no amount of money can ever buy.”


  1. What was the reward Chandra got for being honest?
  2. What reward did Surya get for being honest?
  3. What had the two brothers learnt from their father? Why were they grateful to him?
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