In a village, there lived two friends. Their names were Dharambuddhi and Paapbuddhi. Paapbuddhi was not satisfied with the wealth he possessed.
Contrary to this, Dharambuddhi was not only intelligent, but had also a lot of wealth with him. Paapbuddhi made a plan to earn wealth with the help of Dharambuddhi.
One day, he said to Dharambuddhi, “Friend, why are you wasting your talent here? If you go to some other town, you may come across many opportunities to earn a lot of money and fame. If you like, I can also accompany you to the new town.”
Dharambuddhi agreed to the proposal of Paapbuddhi. Both of them set out on a long journey to settle in a new town.
There, Dharambuddhi became very famous and rich in the new town.
After Dharambuddhi and Paapbuddhi had earned a lot of money, decided to return to their home town.
As they arrived near their home town, Paapbuddhi said to Dharambuddhi, “I suppose it will be better if we don’t carry all our wealth with us. Our relatives may ask for their share. Let’s take a nominal amount with us and bury the rest in a pit here. When the need arises, we may come here again and take out the money from the pit.
So, they dug up a pit and after burying their wealth in it, they went to their respective homes.
But, thereafter, in one dark night Paapbuddhi visited the pit all alone and along with his money he stole Dharambuddhi’s money also.
After a few days Paapbuddhi went to Dharambuddhi and said,”Friend I need some money. Let us go to the pit to take out some money.” Dharambhddhi agreed to it and Paapbuddhi and Dharambuddhi went to the spot where the wealth was buried.They dug up the pit, but there was no wealth, in the pit.
“I never did it,” said Dharambuddhi in great anger. Both of them began to fight with each other and at last, the matter was taken to the court.
Paapbuddhi narrated the whole story and said to the judge, “My lord! Dharambuddhi denies that he dug up the wealth in my absence.
So, in my opinion the court should hear the tree also who was the sole witness to all that happened to the wealth there.”
The court agreed to this and fixed a date when the court will visit the tree to know the tree’s version.
In the meantime, Paapbuddhi told his father, “Father, you know, I’ve stolen the wealth of Dharambuddhi. I want you to help me, or else I’ll be caught and punished by the court.”
“What am I supposed to do?” asked Paapbuddhi’s father, “I don’t want to lose the wealth.”
“Well,” said Paapbuddhi, “there is a Shami tree in the jungle. We had buried the wealth near this tree. The tree is hollow from inside. You just hide in the hollow.
When the judges ask you to name the thief you shout from inside the tree. ‘It’s Dharambuddhi.’ His father agreed to do it.
On the appointed day, the judge accompanied by Paapbuddhi and Dharambuddhi and other people went to the tree. Paapbuddhi then went near the tree and asked in a loud voice, “0, divine tree, tell us the name of the thief?”
Immediately, there came a voice from inside the tree,”Dharambuddhi is the thief. He has stolen the wealth.”
The judge was wonderstruck to hear the tree speak.
But, meanwhile, Dharambuddhi put a heap of dry leaves and grass around the tree and lighted it. Everyone failed to understand what Dharambuddhi was upto. Soon there was a big fire around the tree trunk.
After sometime, Paapbuddhi’s father jumped out of the hollow of the tree yelling for help. Half of his body was burnt and his eyes were popping out.
Now everything was crystal clear. The judge understood the whole story. He held Paapbuddhi responsible for the theft. He ordered his men of the court to hang Paapbuddhi to death by the same Shami tree.
The people were happy that Dharambuddhi, after all, got justice. Paapbuddhi was rightly punished for his greed and dishonesty.