Ullu : A wise old Owl Kabbu : A white Pigeon Cybersher : The Jungle King Bony : The Horse Narrator Doctor
Scene - 1
After the Internet came to the jungle, Kabbu, the white pigeon, lost his job as the
postman. But one day, Chhotu, the son of the lion-king Cybersher, fell ill and there
was no way to call the doctor. The Internet lines had been destroyed in a storm…
Kabbu was the head of the Postal Department of the
Ranthambore jungle, the biggest and most
prosperous jungle in the area. Kabbu and his fleet
of twenty-one pigeons carried letters, parcels,
money orders, postal orders, etc. from Ranthambore
to the other jungles and back. Everyone said their
fleet was the smartest, fastest and most efficient in
all of Jungledom. The department had won several
awards for the quality and efficiency of
Ullu : Why are you looking so sad?
Kabbu : (snapping) You too would look sad if you were going to lose your job.
Ullu : Who told you that you are going to lose your job?
Kabbu : No one needs to tell me. It is pretty clear. Have you heard of the Internet?
Ullu : (guessing) Is...is it some new kind of net the humans have designed to catch us?
Kabbu : Ha! You are supposed to be wise but your wisdom
seems to be all outdated. To put it simply, the
Internet is a way for all the computers to talk to
each other. Sitting in one corner of the world, we
can be in touch with anyone anywhere through the
great power of the Internet. We can also access
every imaginable piece of information using the
Internet. It has already come to Ranthambore in a
big way. Our king, Cybersher has the latest
computer with an Internet connection. He spends
the whole day surfing the Net. He has also made
many friends in cyberspace and chats with them
for hours. His wife, Sherni, is quite upset with him.
He refuses to take her shopping and doesn't help
their cub Chhotu with his homework. The other
day, when Cybersher's mother-in-law came for a
visit, do you know what he did? He refused to even
greet her with a roar because he was so busy on the Net! That turned out to be
the last straw. When Sherni complained, Cybersher said, "I am now a netizen
- a citizen of the Net. Cyberspace is my world and the World Wide Web my
Narrator : Ullu's head started spinning after listening to Kabbu's long description of Cybersher's new interest. All these strange words were
getting too much for him: internet, cyberspace, surfing,
Ullu : Tell me, Kabbu, where does your job fit into all this?
Kabbu : Cybersher is now sending e-mails all over Jungledom.
And he is encouraging the other animals to do the same.
He is planning to open cyber cafes where the animals
can sit and surf the Net as well as send e-mails. Now,
tell me, if everyone starts sending e-mails, what are my
boys and I supposed to do?
Ullu : Wait, wait! What is an E male? I have heard of male and
female, but I have never heard of an E male.
Kabbu : No, no, e-mail stands for electronic mail. The word is
spelt as e-m-a-i-l, not E-m-a-l-e. It is used for sending
letters from one computer to the other. It takes only
seconds for the letter to go and hardly costs anything.
Ullu : Sounds too good to be true…
Kabbu: (in a low voice, flying away with a sad flutter of his wings) It is true. That is why I am sulking. And you know what my mail is now called? It has been
nicknamed snail mail because it is so slow when compared to e-mail!
Narrator: Ullu sat deep in thought. He was Ranthambore's seniormost citizen and was treated with a lot of respect by the king. He decided to go and meet
Cybersher and have a little chat with him. Ullu found Cybersher sitting in front
of a computer, his paw on a small funny-looking thing that he kept moving up
Ullu: (pointing to the device) What is this?
Cybersher: Hello, Ullu! How are you? This is a mouse.
Ullu: What! a mouse? It hardly looks like one. And even though you are
squeezing the life out of it, I can't hear the slightest cry. Is it dead?
Cybersher: (roaring with laughter, wiping the tears from his eyes) Ha, ha! It's not a real mouse, Ullu, it's a computer mouse!
Ullu: (after some time) King! Can you give me a few minutes? I have to discuss
something very important.
Cybersher: (without looking up from the computer) What is it?
Ullu: It is about Kabbu, but I think it involves all of us….
Cybersher: (shutting down his computer and turning towards Ullu and snapping) Okay, come out with it.
Narrator: Ullu narrated his conversation with Kabbu to Cybersher.
Cybersher : Well, Kabbu's worry is for real. In this age of high speed and efficiency, there is little place for age-old methods. Why should I depend on Kabbu and his fleet? They will take days to deliver a message when I can send it in
seconds on the Internet. Moreover, while e-mail is almost free, snail mail
Ullu : But King, what will happen to Kabbu and his team?
Cybersher : They will have to develop some new skills. The Internet
is the future and e-mail is its most useful feature. I want
the entire jungle to march in tune with the times and not
be left behind. Just for the sake of twenty-odd pigeons I
can't deny my jungle, Ranthambore, the benefits of
Ullu : But King, new and old technology can live together, side
by side, can they not? When the airlines were created,
people said that would be the end of the railways. But
even after almost a century, the railways continue to run
successfully. When TV was invented, everyone predicted the death of cinema. But
both are now living together happily.
Cybersher : (dismissing Ullu with a wave of his
hand and returning to his computer)
Whatever you might say, Ullu, e-mail
will render snail mail utterly useless.
It is better that Kabbu and his team
start looking for other jobs!
Adapted from Ramendra Kumar's short story
Internet in The Jungle - Part : 1 - Internet in The Jungle - Internet in The Jungle - Internet in The Jungle