Once a crow and his wife built their nest atop a huge banyan tree beside a river. They were very happy there. But when the female crow laid her eggs, they were in for an unpleasant shock. A huge snake who lived in a hole at the bottom of the tree came up and ate all their beautiful eggs.
The crows were helpless with anger and pain. “You can’t let this wicked snake eat our children anymore,” cried the female crow bitterly. “You have to find a way to save them from him,’ she said.
“Let us go to our friend the jackal. He is very clever. He will surely be able to help us with a solution,” said the male crow.
They both flew to the cave in the forest where their friend the jackal lived.
The jackal saw them coming. “Hello my friends. Why do you look so sad and worried? Can I help you in any way?”he asked.
“Every time my wife lays eggs in our nest, a wicked snake living at the foot of the tree eats them up,” explained the crow.
“We want to get rid of him and save our children. Please tell us what we can do.”
The jackal thought for some time. “I know what you should do,” said the jackal and he told the plan to the crows.
It was a habit of the queen to come with her maids for a bath to the river. When they did so, they removed all their clothes and jewels and placed them on the river bank. On the following day the queen and her maids as usual entered the river.
“You know what to do right?” asked the crow to his wife. “Yes,” she answered.
Both of them flew over the pile of clothes and jewels. The female crow swiftly picked up a precious pearl necklace in her beak. At the same time the male crow began to caw loudly to gain the attention of the queen and her maids.
“Oh, those crows have taken my pearl necklace.” cried the queen. “Guards!” she cried. “Get that necklace back from those pesky crows.” Her guards chased the crows shouting loudly.
The crows flew straight to the banyan tree with the guards close behind. Hearing all the noise, the snake came out of his hole at the foot of the tree. Immediately, the female crow dropped the necklace right where the snake was.
“Look out! There is a huge snake near the necklace,” alerted one guard.
Before the snake could realise what was happening, the guards attacked him with sharp spears and killed him. The guards then picked up the necklace and took it back to their queen.
The crows thanked their friend the jackal for helping them get rid of their enemy. They lived happily with their children.