Vikram and Betaal story- Once upon a time, a wise king named Udayaditya lived in Mithila. Everyone under his rule respected the king for his sense of justice and equality. They loved him for his kindness. The king had a daughter. She was known for her beauty and intelligence.
Rumours went that Princess Rupamanjari was so beautiful that she could make any man fall in love with her. When she grew up, all the eligible princes in the kingdoms far and near wished to marry her. It was hard for the poor king and his queen to select which of them would be best for their beloved daughter.
Then one day, while the king held the royal court, a very handsome prince approached him, bowed respectfully, and said in a deep voice, “I am the prince of Kalinga, and I have come to you with a wish in my heart.”
He said that he desired to Marry the King’s daughter. The king said, “I respect your wish, young man. Kalinga is our neighbour and ally. I shall be happy to have you as my son-in-law, as this will strengthen the bonds between our kingdoms. But tell me, apart from belonging to a royal family, what do you think makes you special?”
The prince said, “Your Majesty, I am a warrior, and I have trained with great masters in various forms of martial arts. I lead the army of my country as their chief and have won many battles.” The king was pleased. He invited the young prince to stay with his family in the palace as a royal guest until the princess made a decision about the proposal.
The next day, as the king was holding his court, another young prince approached him and said that he wished to marry the princess. This young prince introduced himself as the prince of Janakpura and said, “Your majesty, I have read all the religious books.
I have spent days searching for the truths of life and of the world. My quest for knowledge makes me special.” The king was impressed again. He requested that the prince stay as his royal guest until it was decided.
On the third day, another handsome prince approached the king and said he was from Vaishali. He too said that he wished to marry Princess Rupamanjari. He said, “Your Majesty, I am gifted by nature. I can understand the language of birds and beasts. I understand their joys and their sorrows.” The king admired his talent. Like before, he asked this prince to remain as his guest while the princess made a decision about the proposal.
And there, on the fourth day, came to the king a prince from Malabya. Like all the three princes who came before him, he too expressed his desire to marry the princess. He claimed, ”Your Majesty, I come from a rich kingdom where we believe that progress lies in making money.
I am a skilled trader. I can make good use of wealth to generate more wealth.” The king and his queen were confused as to which prince among the four would make a perfect groom for their daughter. After much thought, they left it to their daughter to decide.
And here, Betaal stopped. He asked, “Great king, now tell me, who do you think the princess should choose? Who should make the right match for her beauty and intelligence?” Vikram was quick to answer, “If the princess is as intelligent as you tell me, she would select the prince of Kalinga. The prince of Janakpura is a scholar. He cannot be a good king.” Betaal nodded.
The king continued, “The prince from Vaishali is exceptionally gifted, as he can understand the language of the birds and the beasts. But what good is that when his kingdom is at war? And as for the prince of Malabya, he is, by virtue, a businessman and not a king.
If the princess is wise and cares for her people, she would marry the prince of Kalinga, as he is a true warrior, and during times of war, he will lead his people to peace.” Betaal was laughing again. “You are right, great king. And here I go.” With a swift tug, Betaal rid himself of the King and flew back to the tree.