Ruskin Bond asserts the moral right to be identified as the author of this work. . village. Ram Bharosa was astonished to see Binya's blue umbrella. “What have. Most of my month's earnings went to the dentist. the human race), and so, as Bergson said: "We The India I Love - Anaesthesia Emergencies. rest on a bright blue umbrella, a frilly thing for women, which lay open on the grass Ruskin Bond (born ) is one of India's best loved and acclaimed writers.
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Here you can get it directly ⇩ The Blue Umbrella The Blue Umbrella is a novel set in the mountainous Gharwal region. The story is about a little girl called Binya. In this article, we will discuss the summary of The Blue Umbrella by Ruskin Bond. The story starts with picnic in the valley. She is attracted to their activities and especially smitten by a blue umbrella. Read further on this PDF. Tags: Ruskin. As soon as Binya saw the beautiful blue silk umbrella she wanted it She wanted it so badly that she was willing to give her lucky leopards claw pendant in.
Unfortunate Event Soon the monsoon arrives and the rains bring the village school to a close. Ram Bharosa employs a young boy named Ramrajan in his shop. Trying to impress his employer, Ramrajan tries to steal the umbrella while Binya goes to collect porcupines from the forest. The whole village stops visiting his shop and he falls into great misery. A Kind Gesture Seeing the plight of Ram Bharosa, Binya feels sympathy for him and decides to donate the umbrella to him.
In return, he presents Binya a bear-claw pendant, considered even luckier than her leopard-claw pendant. Analysis Even the story is short and simple but it gives value lessons about human goodness and kindness. Binya is an example of innocence and compassion and stands out as a great role model for children and adults alike. The Blue Umbrella tells tales of extraordinary heroism by ordinary people of Garhwal hills. It highlights that a simple story told in an earnest style can create a grand emotional effect on the readers.
He ran his hand along the trunk of the tree and put his finger to the tip of a leaf. Its tail twitched occasionally and the animal appeared to be sleeping.
At the sound of distant voices it raised its head to listen, then stood up and leapt lightly over the boulders in the stream, disappearing among the trees on the opposite bank.
A minute or two later, three children came walking down the forest path. They were a girl and two boys, and they were singing in their local dialect an old song they had learnt from their grandparents. Five more miles to go! We climb through rain and snow. Their school satchels looked new, their clothes had been washed and pressed. Their loud and cheerful singing startled a Spotted Forktail. The bird left its favourite rock in the stream and flew down the dark ravine. The girl and her small brother were taking this path for the first time.
It needed constant winding. The glass was badly scratched and she could barely make out the figures on the dial. Even our teacher, Mr Mani, asks me for the time.
The clock in our classroom keeps stopping. Bina was the same age as Prakash. She had pink cheeks, soft brown eyes, and hair that was just beginning to lose its natural curls. Hers was a gentle face, but a determined little chin showed that she could be a strong person. Sonu, her younger brother, was ten.
He was a thin boy who had been sickly as a child but was now beginning to fill out. Although he did not look very athletic, he could run like the wind. Bina had been going to school in her own village of Koli, on the other side of the mountain. But it had been a Primary School, finishing at Class Five. Now, in order to study in the Sixth, she would have to walk several miles every day to Nauti, where there was a High School going up to the Eighth.
It had been decided that Sonu would also shift to the new school, to give Bina company. Prakash, their neighbour in Koli, was already a pupil at the Nauti school. His mischievous nature, which sometimes got him into trouble, had resulted in his having to repeat a year. Wait till you see old Mr Mani. At out last lesson, instead of maths, he gave us a geography lesson!
She was excited about the new school and the prospect of different surroundings. She had seldom been outside her own village, with its small school and single ration shop. Her father, who was a soldier, was away for nine months in the year and Sonu was still too small for the heavier tasks.
As they neared Nauti village, they were joined by other children coming from different directions. Even where there were no major roads, the mountains were full of little lanes and short cuts. Like a game of snakes and ladders, these narrow paths zigzagged around the hills and villages, cutting through fields and crossing narrow ravines until they came together to form a fairly busy road along which mules, cattle and goats joined the throng.
Nauti was a fairly large village, and from here a broader but dustier road started for Tehri. There was a small bus, several trucks and for part of the way a road-roller. It stood on the roadside half way up the road from Tehri.
Prakash knew almost everyone in the area, and exchanged greetings and gossip with other children as well as with muleteers, bus-drivers, milkmen and labourers working on the road. A small crowd had assembled on the playing field. Something unusual seemed to have happened.
Prakash ran forward to see what it was all about. Bina and Sonu stood aside, waiting in a patch of sunlight near the boundary wall. Prakash soon came running back to them.
He was bubbling over with excitement. People are saying a leopard must have carried him off! He was about fifty-five and was expected to retire soon. But for the children, adults over forty seemed ancient! And Mr Mani had always been a bit absent-minded, even as a young man. For Mr Mani to disappear was puzzling; for him to disappear without his breakfast was extraordinary. Then a milkman returning from the next village said he had seen a leopard sitting on a rock on the outskirts of the pine forest.
There had been talk of a cattle-killer in the valley, of leopards and other animals being displaced by the construction of a dam. But as yet no one had heard of a leopard attacking a man. Could Mr Mani have been its first victim? Someone found a strip of red cloth entangled in a blackberry bush and went running through the village showing it to everyone.
Mr Mani had been known to wear red pyjamas. Surely, he had been seized and eaten! But where were his remains?
And why had he been in his pyjamas? Meanwhile, Bina and Sonu and the rest of the children had followed their teachers into the school playground. Feeling a little lost, Bina looked around for Prakash. She found herself facing a dark slender young woman wearing spectacles, who must have been in her early twenties — just a little too old to be another student. She had a kind expressive face and she seemed a little concerned by all that had been happening. We were at school there. Are you in the Sixth class?
My name is Tania Ramola. No, he snapped, he had not been attacked by a leopard; and yes, he had lost his pyjamas and would someone kindly return them to him? After much questioning, Mr Mani admitted that he had gone further than he had intended, and that he had lost his way coming back. He had been a bit upset because the new teacher, a slip of a girl, had been given charge of the Sixth, while he was still with the Fifth, along with that troublesome boy Prakash, who kept on reminding him of the time!
The headmaster had explained that as Mr Mani was due to retire at the end of the year, the school did not wish to burden him with a senior class.
But Mr Mani looked upon the whole thing as a plot to get rid of him. He glowered at Miss Ramola whenever he passed her. And when she smiled back at him, he looked the other way!
When the postmaster opened the thermos, he found only a few drops of broth at the bottom — Mr Mani had drunk the rest somewhere along the way. When sometimes Mr Mani spoke of his coming retirement, it was to describe his plans for the small field he owned just behind the house. Right now, it was full of potatoes, which did not require much looking after; but he had plans for growing dahlias, roses, French beans, and other fruits and flowers.
The next time he visited Tehri, he promised himself, he would download some dahlia bulbs and rose cuttings. The monsoon season would be a good time to put them down. And meanwhile, his potatoes were still flourishing. She felt at ease with Miss Ramola, as did most of the boys and girls in her class. Tania Ramola had been to distant towns such as Delhi and Lucknow — places they had only read about — and it was said that she had a brother who was a pilot and flew planes all over the world.
Most of the children had, of course, seen planes flying overhead, but none of them had seen a ship, and only a few had been in a train. Tehri mountain was far from the railway and hundreds of miles from the sea. But they all knew about the big dam that was being built at Tehri, just forty miles away. Bina, Sonu and Prakash had company for part of the way home, but gradually the other children went off in different directions.
Once they had crossed the stream, they were on their own again. It was a steep climb all the way back to their village. Prakash had a supply of peanuts which he shared with Bina and Sonu, and at a small spring they quenched their thirst. When they were less than a mile from home, they met a postman who had finished his round of the villages in the area and was now returning to Nauti.
I saw it this morning, not far from the stream. No one is sure how it got here. Get home early. They took his advice and walked faster, and Sonu forgot to complain about his aching feet. They were home well before sunset. There was a smell of cooking in the air and they were hungry. Their mother was lighting the kitchen stove.
They greeted her with great hugs and demands for an immediate dinner. She was a good cook who could make even the simplest of dishes taste delicious. Electricity had yet to reach their village, and they took their meal by the light of a kerosene lamp.
After the meal, Sonu settled down to do a little homework, while Bina stepped outside to look at the stars. Across the fields, someone was playing a flute. They had been getting into his garden at night and digging up and eating his potatoes.
From his bedroom window — left open, now that the mild-April weather had arrived — he could listen to them enjoying the vegetables he had worked hard to grow. Scrunch, scrunch! Katar, katar, as their sharp teeth sliced through the largest and juiciest of potatoes. For Mr Mani it was as though they were biting through his own flesh. And the sound of them digging industriously as they rooted up those healthy, leafy plants, made him tremble with rage and indignation.
The unfairness of it all! Yes, Mr Mani hated porcupines. He prayed for their destruction, their removal from the face of the earth. Mr Mani got out of bed every night, torch in one hand, a stout stick in the other, but as soon as he stepped into the garden the crunching and digging stopped and he was greeted by the most infuriating of silences. He would grope around in the dark, swinging wildly with the stick, but not a single porcupine was to be seen or heard.
As soon as he was back in bed — the sounds would start all over again. Scrunch, scrunch, katar, katar… Mr Mani came to his class tired and dishevelled, with rings beneath his eyes and a permanent frown on his face. It took some time for his pupils to discover the reason for his misery, but when they did, they felt sorry for their teacher and took to discussing ways and means of saving his potatoes from the porcupines. It was Prakash who came up with the idea of a moat or waterditch.
By evening the moat was ready, but it was still dry and the porcupines got in again that night and had a great feast. They had the satisfaction of watching it flow gently into the ditch. Everyone went home in a good mood. By nightfall, the ditch had overflowed, the potato field was flooded, and Mr Mani found himself trapped inside his house. But Prakash and his friends had won the day. The porcupines stayed away that night!
A month had passed, and wild violets, daisies and buttercups now sprinkled the hill slopes, and on her way to school Bina gathered enough to make a little posy. The bunch of flowers fitted easily into an old ink-well.
Miss Ramola was delighted to find this little display in the middle of her desk. Bina kept quiet, and the rest of the class smiled secretively. After that, they took turns bringing flowers for the classroom.
On her long walks to school and home again, Bina became aware that April was the month of new leaves.
The oak leaves were bright green above and silver beneath, and when they rippled in the breeze they were like clouds of silvery green.
The path was strewn with old leaves, dry and crackly. Sonu loved kicking them around. Clouds of white butterflies floated across the stream. Sonu was chasing a butterfly when he stumbled over something dark and repulsive. He went sprawling on the grass. When he got to his feet, he looked down at the remains of a small animal. Come quickly!
It was part of a sheep, killed some days earlier by a much larger animal. The leopard will be hunting elsewhere by now. But she did not want Sonu to feel afraid, so she did not mention the story. And for a few days, whenever they reached the stream, they crossed over very quickly, unwilling to linger too long at that lovely spot.
Miss Ramola had arranged to take her class, and Mr Mani, not wishing to be left out, insisted on taking his class as well. That meant there were about fifty boys and girls taking part in the outing. The little bus could only take thirty. A friendly truck-driver agreed to take some children if they were prepared to sit on sacks of potatoes. And Prakash persuaded the owner of the diesel-roller to turn it round and head it back to Tehri — with him and a couple of friends up on the driving seat.
The bus left at 9 a. The truck was to follow later. The sharp curves along the winding, downhill road made several children feel sick.
The bus-driver seemed to be in a tearing hurry. He took them along at rolling, rollicking speed, which made Bina feel quite giddy. She rested her head on her arms and refused to look out of the window. Hairpin bends and cliff edges, pine forests and snowcapped peaks, all swept past her, but she felt too ill to want to look at anything.
It was just as well — those sudden drops, hundreds of feet to the valley below, were quite frightening. They had made this journey many times. They were busy arguing about the advantages and disadvantages of large dams — an argument that was to continue on and off for much of the day; sometimes in Hindi, sometimes in English, sometimes in the local dialect! Meanwhile, Prakash and his friends had reached the roller.
They were soon overtaken by both the bus and the truck but kept moving along at a steady chug. Prakash spotted Bina at the window of the bus and waved cheerfully. She responded feebly. Bina felt better when the road levelled out near Tehri. As they crossed an old bridge over the wide river, they were startled by a loud bang which made the bus shudder.
A cloud of dust rose above the town. While they were drinking cups of tea at the bus stop, waiting for the potato truck and the road-roller, Miss Ramola and Mr Mani continued their argument about the dam.
Miss Ramola maintained that it would bring electric power and water for irrigation to large areas of the country, including the surrounding area. Mr Mani declared that it was a menace, as it was situated in an earthquake zone.
There would be a terrible disaster if the dam burst! Bina found it all very confusing. And what about the animals in the area, she wondered, what would happen to them? The argument was becoming quite heated when the potato truck arrived.
Some eight or nine miles before Tehri the road-roller had broken down, and Prakash and his friends were forced to walk. They had not gone far, however, when a mule train came along — five or six mules that had been delivering sacks of grain in Nauti.
A boy rode on the first mule, but the others had no loads. There were no saddles, only gunny sacks strapped on to the mules with rope.
They had a rough but jolly ride down to the Tehri bus stop. None of them had ever ridden mules; but they had saved at least an hour on the road. Looking around the bus stop for the rest of the party, they could find no one from their school. And Mr Mani, who should have been waiting for them, had vanished. Tania Ramola and her group had taken the steep road to the hill above Tehri. The earthworks for the dam were only just coming up, but a wide tunnel had been bored through the mountain to divert the river into another channel.
Down below, the old town was still spread out across the valley and from a distance it looked quite charming and picturesque. The long bazaar, and the temples, the schools and the jail, and hundreds of houses, for many miles up the valley. All those people will have to go — thousands of them! And it was a good thing, she mused, that there was only a small stream and not a big river running past her village. To be uprooted like this — a town and hundreds of villages — and put down somewhere on the hot, dusty plains — seemed to her unbearable.
She did not know it, but all the animals and most of the birds had already left the area. The leopard had been among them. They walked through the colourful, crowded bazaar, where fruit-sellers did business beside silversmiths, and pavement vendors sold everything from umbrellas to glass bangles. Sparrows attacked sacks of grain, monkeys made off with bananas, and stray cows and dogs rummaged in refuse bins, but nobody took any notice.
Music blared from radios. Buses blew their horns. Sonu bought a whistle to add to the general din, but Miss Ramola told him to put it away. Bina had kept ten rupees aside, and now she used it to download a cotton head-scarf for her mother.
As they were about to enter a small restaurant for a meal, they were joined by Prakash and his companions; but of Mr Mani there was still no sign. At last, when they were about to give up the search, they saw him emerge from a by-lane, a large sack slung over his shoulder. Dahlia bulbs! Mr Mani had refused to be separated from his sack of dahlia bulbs, and had been forced to sit in the back of the truck with Prakash and most of the boys.
Bina did not feel so ill on the return journey. Going uphill was definitely better than going downhill! But by the time the bus reached Nauti it was too late for most of the children to walk back to the more distant villages.
The boys were put up in different homes, while the girls were given beds in the school verandah. The night was warm and still. Large moths fluttered around the single bulb that lit the verandah. Counting moths, Sonu soon fell asleep. But Bina stayed awake for some time, listening to the sounds of the night. A nightjar went tonk-tonk in the bushes, and somewhere in the forest an owl hooted softly.
The sharp call of a barking-deer travelled up the valley, from the direction of the stream. Jackals kept howling. It seemed that there were more of them than ever before.
Bina was not the only one to hear the barking-deer. The leopard, stretched full length on a rocky ledge, heard it too. The leopard raised its head and then got up slowly. The deer was its natural prey. As the cry of the barking-deer sounded nearer, the leopard left its look-out point and moved swiftly through the shadows towards the stream. The resin in the pines made these trees burn more fiercely, and the wind would take sparks from the trees and carry them into the dry grass and leaves, so that new fires would spring up before the old ones had died out.
But Nauti was surrounded by a fire that raged for three days, and the children had to stay away from school. And then, towards the end of June, the monsoon rains arrived and there was an end to forest fires.