Akbar’s Challenge

Akbar was once greeted by a consortium of nobles from different parts of the kingdom. They told the emperor that they had come for the position of royal advisor, which has been with Birbal for years.

“You can put a test and pick one of us. We can prove that we are no less than Birbal,” said the leader of the consortium.

Akbar thought for a moment and agreed.

“Alright. I have a test for all of you,” Akbar said removing his waistband.

He lied on the floor, and told the nobles, “Please cover me from head to toe with my waistband cloth. The one who succeeds in doing so becomes my advisor.”

The nobles tried their best, but the cloth was too short to cover the entire body. If they moved the cloth up, the feet left uncovered, and if they pulled it a bit below, the head came into the open.

Akbar presented Birbal with the challenge. Birbal took a look at the cloth and told Akbar, “Your majesty, please fold your knees.”

The emperor did as said. Birbal spread the cloth and this time it covered Akbar from head to toe.

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The nobles apologized to Akbar and Birbal and left the court never to challenge Birbal’s position again.

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