Story for Kids – CITIZENS OF TOMORROW
English Translation: M.Venkateshwarlu
Telugu original: “Bhavi pourulu” by P.S.M. Lakshmi
Jagtap Water Falls is a popular tourist attraction in Mau near Pune, Maharashtra. In August (normally in rainy season), a lot of tourists flock to these beautiful water falls.
In 2019, on a Sunday morning at 1030hrs, four year old Ari and 2 year old Nivin went to see these falls with their mother and grandmother.
It was the middle of August. By this time of the year, the falls usually have hundreds of visitors. To their surprise there were no visitors on that day. The watchman opened the gate and issued the entry tickets.
Ari and Nivin entered the gate. At a distance, they saw the water falls and ran towards them. Both the elders started running behind the kids. The group entered the place hoping to see a huge, gushing waterfall and a big pond to play in. But what do they find there!? Contrary to their expectations, there was very little water and no visitors. Pune hadn’t got much rain yet, so they had the whole place to themselves.
After visiting the net a day earlier, their mother encouraged the kids saying: “Tomorrow morning, we are all going to see a beautiful water fall; they fall from a hill full of greenery. The water forms a swimming pool at the bottom. Its depth is not much. You can enter and play in the pool.”
Ari brought his swim suit thinking he could swim, but was totally disappointed on seeing a scanty waterfall and the small pond full of pebbles on the bottom. His mother wanted to take him to the fall, but he refused. Nivin did not mind all this; for him, it was a big place to play. He got into his act. He ran on the steps by the pool and played with the water passing over the steps. He also tossed little pebbles into the pond.
Ari, who is naturally very inquisitive, started shooting questions to his mother, “why is there no water? why are there no rains? Will rain come only in one month or two months? Will rain not come if there are no trees?”…and on and on. His mother tried to patiently explain everything to him.
Although Ari did not fully understand the answers given by his mother, to some extent he understood that water should not be wasted; if it is, then there won’t be much water left for him when he is older, so he might not have any for drinking and bathing. In the absence of water, trees will not grow. It means there won’t be any human beings, dogs, cats or any animals. No one will exist. So, he decided to save water.
At that point, he saw Nivin throwing stones into the little pond. He ran towards Nivin, saying “No, no”. He pulled the pebble from Nivin’s hand and told him “You should not spoil water. If you throw stones into the pond, there will be no water. When we grow up, we need water, don’t you understand.” Although he did not understand Ari’s words, Nivin stepped away and bobbing his head right and left, he ran to pluck plants from the garden by the falls. On seeing this, Ari said: “No, no” don’t pluck plants. When they grow as trees, they will bring rains to us. We will get water”.
Hearing this, his mother and grandmother thought: “That’s such a wise thought from the little kid. Our country would have been in a far better position if the adults too thought this way”
So children, you are the citizens of tomorrow. You have to build your future. Protect our planet.