One day, the Emperor Akbar was holding his court. He had a separate hour when he listened to complaints made by the people.A merchant entered the court one day with a serious complaint."O Badshah,I had kept a leather bag of gold mohurs safely locked in my almirah one night. But the next morning, I opened my almirah and found the bag of gold mohurs missing. I have 4 loyal servants. But I suspect that one of them has stolen the gold mohurs. They all say that they are innocent. If I beat even one of them to get the truth, the other 3 servants will leave their jobs. Please tell me how I can catch the thief without beating any of the 4 servants", he said."That is certainly a problem. For, the normal penal way is to beat each so that the real thief would confess. But that would mean resorting to physical violence which you do not want", the Emperor said thoughtfully. He looked at Birbal and remarked, "Birbal, I wish you to solve this case. Remember, that the real thief must be found without harming the innocent servants.""It shall be as you wish, O Badshah! I will solve this case to your satisfaction as quickly as possible", Birbal replied.Later that day, he summoned the four servants and questioned them. Each claimed to be innocent."It would have been better if the real thief had confessed. Now I will have to use my magic sticks to catch the thief", Birbal said with regret. Birbal took out four sticks and gave one to each of the four servants."Don't think that these are ordinary sticks", he warned. "They have magical properties. I want each of you to keep the stick beside you at night. The person whose stick grows by 4 inches is the thief. Come back to me with the sticks tomorrow morning", Birbal said and sent the servants home.Now, the real thief thought of a way to get the better of Birbal. He decided to cut 4 inches of his stick. So, even if Birbal's magic stick grew by 4 inches, he would not be caught as it would look the same. The man took a sharp knife and cut off 4 inches.The four servants went to Birbal the next morning with their sticks. Birbal spotted the thief at once when he saw the sticks. He sent the other three servants away."I know that you stole the bag of gold mohurs", Birbal said sternly to the remaining servant. "I know this because the sticks I gave are ordinary. There is nothing magical about them. I told so to trap the thief. It was your guilty conscience which made you cut off 4 inches!"Birbal took the man to the Emperor Akbar and told him everything.The Emperor was pleased with Birbal's cleverness."Tell us where you have hidden the bag of gold mohurs", he said to the thief who confessed at once. The merchant was happy to get back his money. Everyone showered praises on Birbal. Must Watch....
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