In the city of Dwaraka, there lived a man called Satrajit. Satrajit was a great devotee of Surya, the Sun God. He used to worship the Sun God and pray to him daily. Once as Satrajit was offering his prayers to the Sun God, he felt a strange force in the room. Satrajit opened his eyes and was flabbergasted to find the Sun God before him.
Amazed and thrilled, Satrajit fell at the feet of the God. ‘My Lord! You have come…You have blessed me with your presence…’ Satrajit was almost moved to tears. ‘There is absolutely nothing more that I need…’
Surya was touched by Satrajit’s devotion. ‘No Satrajit…You are a great devotee…I was so pleased by your devotion that I felt like…I…was dragged here…And besides you are also a good man. You have done good to your family and to the people around you, with whatever you have.’
Satrajit just bowed his head in pleasure. Surya spoke again. ‘Satrajit! I am moved with your devotion! You deserve to live better than the way you are now…I am going to give you the Syamantaka gem!’
Satrajit’s eyes went round with amazement and surprise…The Syamantaka gem was a precious gem which glowed like the Sun God itself…Gold Coins flowed in the house where the Syamantaka gem was there…Health and prosperity also followed the Syamantaka gem…And Surya was giving him the gem! Satrajit was so dumbstruck that he just fell at Surya’s feet again unable to say anything more….
Surya smiled and pulled out a glowing gem and handed it over to Satrajit. With trembling hands Satrajit held the warm gem in his hands. ‘The gem would give you ten gold coins a day…Protect the gem well. It will keep you happy!’ Saying this Surya vanished from there. Satrajit was gazing at the gem with wonder for a long time, after Surya had vanished. He finally closed his eyes and shook himself up. He muttered a thank you prayer to Surya and took the gem to his prayer room and worshiped the gem.
Soon the city of Dwaraka spoke about the rich, kind and generous Satrajit. Any person who went to him in need was always helped by him…Satrajit always had a kind word with everyone and helped people out with their money problems…
However some people were curious. Satrajit had not been a very wealthy man…He had always been charitable, but now Satrajit seemed to be giving money which was way beyond his earning capacity…Satrajit was now living in a palace and was leading a life of luxury…How could he do that….
Some close friends of Satrajit spoke to him. ‘Satrajit! How…how did you suddenly get so much money?’
Satrajit thought for some time…Do I tell them about the gem? Satrajit nodded to himself. People would come to know about this eventually…If I myself tell people about it, then atleast they would not feel like I have lied to them…
‘I have the Syamantaka gem with me!’ His friends listened with wide eyes amazement as Satrajit told them about how Surya had given him the gem. He showed it all his friends. His friends realizing that Satrajit was indeed blessed as the gem was handed over to him by a Deva, appreciated him and left for their home.
The friends told the story to their friends and their friends told the stories to others…soon all the people in Dwaraka came to know about this…News of the Syamantaka gem reached the royal palace of Krishna.
Krishna was thrilled when he heard about the Syamantaka gem…A man had obtained all this by his devotion…That is something that every person would aspire to do…But…But…Krishna realized with sudden clarity …What if someone gets jealous of Satrajit…Why they may even rob him of it…It could be dangerous for him… Krishna slowly nodded his head. He decided to go and talk to Satrajit.
Krishna called his guard and asked him to ready his horses. Krishna got ready and travelled in his chariot to the house of Satrajit. Satrajit was amazed to see the King of Dwaraka, the Dark Lord himself walk inside his home. He faltered and nervously welcomed Krishna. He hurriedly seated him, eagerly showed off his hospitality.
Krishna firmly shook his head. ‘Satrajit! Thank you for your hospitality. But there is something I need to talk to you…’
Satrajit nodded his head nervously, ‘Pl…lease my Lord…Go ahead…You have taken the trouble to come to my home and talk to me…it has to be something serious…’
Krishna nodded, ‘Satrajit, I know you have the Syamantaka gem with you…’ Satrajit looked amazed and little afraid. Why would Krishna talk to him about the Syamantaka gem? He did not interrupt Krishna and Krishna spoke. ‘Having the Syamantaka gem with you would be dangerous…’ Satrajit looked suspiciously at Krishna as Krishna spoke quietly, ‘What if thieves suddenly decide to steal the gems from you…’ Krishna looked around. ‘You cannot protect the gem well in your house…’ Satrajit by now was thoroughly angry and suspicious with Krishna…Krishna may be king, but he cannot just come here like this and say such things about the gem…Krishna continued. ‘Leave the gem in my palace, Satrajit!’ Satrajit was now fuming. His worst fears had come true…Krishna had come here to take his gem…his precious gem…Satrajit angrily shook his head. He interrupted Krishna angrily. ‘I am not going to give away the gem to you Krishna…The gem was handed over to me by Lord Surya…Why should I give the gem to you for safekeeping…It is mine…’
Krishna was a little exasperated as he tried speaking calmly, ‘Satrajit, the gold coins which come out of it…you can keep them…I do not want it…’ Satrajit was still angry…Krishna wanted to take away his gem….and he wanted to pacify him by giving him petty gold coins…He shook his head angrily again.
Krishna tried another approach, ‘Satrajit! I know that you have been using the money from the Gem for the good of the people… But think about it I am the king here…I can help people better if I have the gem with me…’
Satrajit angrily got up from his chair and looked at Krishna. ‘Krishna! You may the king here, but please do not ask me to part with the gem…It is mine and I will not give it anybody…The gem stays here…’ Satrajit said angrily and firmly.
Krishna opened his mouth to argue. But looking at Satrajit’s expression, he realized that Satrajit would not listen to him no matter what he said. Krishna sighed and stood up. ‘Ok Satrajit! Have it your way…Take good care of the gem…and yourself…’
Krishna left Satrajit’s palace unhappily worried about Satrajit…
Now the people in Dwaraka had seen Krishna go to Satrajit’s house and spend some time there and come out unhappily…This was very rare…Usually Krishna invited people to his palace to talk to them…Why would Krishna talk to Satrajit…Satrajit’s friends’ thronged in his home to talk to him.
‘Was that Krishna?’ They looked with amazement at Satrajit. ‘What did Krishna want?’
Satrajit was still fuming as he angrily said, ‘He wanted my Syamantaka gem…’ The people looked surprised as Satrajit spoke. Krishna looked after the people of Dwaraka like his own children. Till date he had never taken anything which belonged to anyone else…But then why suddenly….Satrajit spoke, ‘He wanted to keep the jewel safe, in the palace…He said he would look after the gem and let me take all the coins which came from it…He told me that my Gem was not safe in my home…’ Satrajit shook his head. ‘…All this is just pure talk to make me get rid of the gem…’
People went away to their homes. Some felt that Krishna had acted in the best interests of Satrajit, others felt that Krishna was wrong in trying to take the gem from Satrajit…
A doubt had been planted in the minds of the people….
A few days later all the talk was forgotten. People were back to their normal routine.
Prasenan, Satrajit’s brother came to talk to him. ‘Brother! I have come to seek your blessings and…’ He said as he came strapped with his bows and arrows.
Satrajit looked at his brother lovingly. Satrajit loved his brother very much and took very good care of him. ‘Are you going for hunting, Prasenan?’ Prasenan nodded his head. Satrajit patted Prasenan on his shoulder, ‘Have a good hunt, my brother and stay safe…’
Prasenan spoke, ‘Brother, I have a favour to ask of you…’
Satrajit was surprised. His brother never spoke like this. ‘Go ahead Prasenan…You know I will do anything for you…You are after all my own brother..’
Prasenan said shyly, ‘I felt that…I am going hunting…It is just that…if I took the Syamantaka gem with me, I would feel safer…I think it will keep me safe…’
Satrajit looked at his brother not knowing what to say. The Syamantaka gem was so precious to him…He had not handed the gem even to Krishna…Prasenan was now asking for it…But Prasenan was his own brother…What was the use of having something, if it could not be useful for the people he loved…Satrajit shook his head. Prasenan was his brother, he would take good care of the gem….Besides it was just for a few days…
Satrajit slowly nodded his head and smiled at his brother, ‘Of course you can have it…Just take good care of it, Prasenan…’ Satrajit said as he ruffled his brother's hair lovingly. He went to the prayer room and prayed to the Gem and picked it up and handed it over to Prasenan.
Happily Prasenan took the gem and placed it inside his robes and set off for hunting.
The hunt was very exciting. Prasenan and the others were following their hunt. Their prey skillfully ran through the forest. The others in the hunting party could not catch it. But Prasenan did not want to give up…It would be great if he could come back with the kill…He went deeper and deeper inside the forest chasing the animal…He was separated from the others but he did not care. The thrill of the hunt was too much….
But Prasenan had gone too far in his eagerness. He was in middle of a dense forest with no back up and all alone…
Prasenan failed to see what experienced hunters knew…The jungle was the territory of wild animals and had to be treaded carefully…
As he was riding through the forest, Prasenan saw a lion attack him from the side. Unable to meet the ferocious attack of the lion, Prasenan was killed then and there by the lion….
The hunting party which went with Prasenan was back, but much to Satrajit’s anxiety, there was no sign of Prasenan…What could happen to his brother…Satrajit waited for some more days, but no Prasenan…
Broken-hearted Satrajit was sitting in his home, waiting for any news from his brother…My brother was such a good hunter…how could anything happen to him during the hunt…It almost looks…as if some mischief was afloat…Satrajit blinked. Oh my God…I had refused to give Krishna the Syamantaka gem…That wicked man waited for time and killed my brother in the forest and took the gem from him…Satrajit was suddenly convinced that this was exactly what had happened…He had been so unhappy when he left my house…He thought I would just hand it over…and when I did not….
What had Krishna told him Take good care of the gem…and yourself…Krishna had actually threatened him and he had been a fool not to recognize the threat early enough…Satrajit was filled with anger… If I had known that wicked Krishna would have stooped to kill my brother, I would have handed over the Gem to him…Wretched man…Satrajit angrily paced his house. He felt that his head would explode if he did not tell this to everyone…
A few days later Krishna was happily walking towards the garden. He loved meeting the children there and talking to them…The children also loved him and told him everything that happened in their houses. They were so innocent and pure that it felt like he was back in his own childhood. Krishna smiled to himself as he went to the garden.
Krishna reached the garden and blinked looking around…The normally full and fun filled garden was now almost empty… very few children were there…the few children who were there were looking at him nervously…
When Krishna appeared before them, the children ran away crying and yelling, ‘Thief! Thief! He may kill you too! Stay away from him…’
Krishna blinked again looking back, wondering if the kids were talking about somebody else. There was nobody behind him. Krishna then turned and looked at the children. The children were talking about him! Suddenly afraid, Krishna went forward and stopped a child, who was slow in running away.
The child broke into tears on seeing Krishna so close to him, ‘Please…please...d…d…don’t do anything to me…I do not have anything precious with me…’
Krishna took to deep breath and tried to speak calmly, ‘Wh…Why would I hurt you?’
The child burst out crying, ‘Satrajit told everybody how wicked you are…You hurt people, you are bad person….You killed Prasenan when he was alone in the forest and took the Syamantaka gem from him… You are a thief and you do not hesitate to kill people...you may kill me too…’