Raju Ganapathy



Raju Ganapathy


When the Nag struck

When the Nag struck

6 mins

Besides the railway track in the city of Bangalore laid this stretch of land about a few kilometres in length.  There stood a small jungle full of tall weeds, shrubs making it an ideal habitat for rats, bandicoots and occasional pigs not to leave out the stray dogs and cats. During monsoon water remained stagnant. No human beings dared stepped on to this land. In such a place a nag couple landed. A few weeks back they had left their home what was once used to be a jungle.   Mining got started  by a dubiously famous collier in a place called Chattisgarh. Their forests were getting destroyed but the nag couple could only hiss in anger.  Then they hitch-hiked a journey towards south in trains and trucks and landed in this stretch of land. Much like other humans who too migrated looking -out for a livelihood. By the time they had reached this stretch of land in Bangalore they were on the verge on the death due to starvation. There was prey aplenty in this land. They devoured rats  and got back their original strength. Now they were in a mood for romance. They were doing what the humans imagined as a snake dance depicted in movies with the couple slithering and wriggling their bodies. Typically, the couple in the movies were depicted as semi-clad and the dance were considered as erotic. Humans were a funny lot. They feared snakes, some worshipped snakes. But yet  destroyed their habitat wantonly.

Suddenly the nag couple found themselves as if amid an earth-quake. It was a bull-dozer at work. The railways had decided to clear the strip of land and do some track laying work. A contractor by the name Nagbhusan had won the contract after the customary hand over of cash to the sanctioning minister Nagraj. The contractor knew how to make up for the hard cash given as grease money in the clearance work. It was always a win-win situation for the stake holders involved and it was the ignorant general public who always lost their money which they paid by way of taxes.

Before they realized the imminent danger to them the bulldozer was on to the nag couple. While Nag jumped to safety nagin was a tad slow and got crushed under the bulldozer. Naga got furious and didn’t waste a single moment to weep over the death of his beloved and chased the bulldozer which suddenly stopped.

The driver Nagesh felt that the bulldozer had sit something hard and he wanted to examine what the obstacle was. He froze to death at the sight of the Nag which hissed and stuck at him several times. Nagesh felt it was taking photograph of him like he had seen in one of the movies on how the nag takes revenge on the murderer of her boyfriend. He wondered in fright if the other nag had been crushed by the bulldozer. Nagesh had done his prayer at the Shivji temple as customary to propitiate the gods and had in advance asked for forgiveness of any mistakes to be committed. He hoped now that the god would offer him protection against this vengeful snake. He didn’t not know that he had inadvertently committed murder of nagin.

Nagesh ran for his life towards his motorbike as he could imagine the nag slithering after him. He vividly remembered the movie scene how the cobra chased the perpetrator. He reached the bike and kick started. Least did he know that nag had slipped into the bag that hung by the side of the motorbike.

In the motorbike nag thought for a while as it had somewhat cooled down. Nag decided to strike the man’s wife as he would suffer without his mate like it did now. That would be the right way of revenge he felt.

As soon as the Nagesh reached home his wife Nagalakshmi greeted him and wanted to give the good news that the doctor had confirmed her first pregnancy and she had made kheer on account of it. Though Nagalakshmi found her husband somewhat distraught she felt that it may be on account of his job. Nagesh rushed towards the toilet as he felt like vomiting. In the meantime, Nag slithered down to the kitchen and was waiting for the moment to strike at the man’s wife.

As Nagesh came out of the toilet he once again froze at the sight of the cobra hissing at his wife and saw it strike at her foot. Nag managed to pump some poison and slithered away out of the house with his anger sated somewhat.

Nagesh howled in hysteria as he realised that may be his bulldozer had crushed its mate. Hearing his cry his neighbours came and someone called for an ambulance. Nagalakshmi was lying unconscious and by the time the ambulance reached and took her to hospital, the city traffic had taken a toll of Nagalakshmi and the poison had spread to the cerebrum too. She was declared dead and the doctor informed Nagesh she was a couple of months pregnant too after post-mortem.

Nagesh came under severe depression and had stopped eating and drinking. The contractor Nagaraj finding that the work had stopped sent word to Nagesh and got the news of Nagalakshmi’s death at by snake bite. His imagination flew and he realized that the scenario of what had happened. It was exactly as it had happened.

He consulted the priest and decided to put up a mini temple of Nagdevata near to the site, where the bulldozer was found. His workers did find the crushed body of the cobra when they were clearing the vegetation. The work came to a stop as no worker was willing to go to the site as the news had spread of the nag’s revenge.

Nagraj couldn’t sleep anymore as he kept dreaming of Nag slithering into his house seeking revenge. He made his house snake proof at the advice of his civil engineer.

He got summons from the minister Nagbhusan. In the face-to face meeting Nagbhusan found Nagraj to be distraught and got shocked upon hearing of the revenge episode. They both went to meet the famous guru who had erected a second big statue of Adi Yogi, the god who wore cobras as garland on his neck. The guru had suggested a special agni pooja at the site which would draw all the snakes in the vicinity to the fire and would burn them.

So Nagraj and Nagbhusan undertook this agni-pooja. The nag in the meantime had found its way back to the site and was lucky enough to find a new mate. The nag couple fount it too amusing that some pooja was being performed and they were supposed to enter into the fire. They invaded the pooja and drove away the humans that had gathered at the site. That was to be the temporary end of the work at the site.

Last heard was that both Nagraj and Nagbhusan were undergoing treatment for mental disorder on account of repeated nightmares involving snakes.

Media was cynical about the whole incident of this pooja and was at the centre of a raging debate about superstitions related to snake between the rationalists and the believers. The guru too lost many of his followers after the agni-puja incident.

A little over a month after the episode the nagin was laying her eggs in a pit located near the sewer. In a couple of months snake army would be ready to tackle the human beasts should the work resume at this stretch of the land.

Rate this content
Log in

Similar english story from Thriller