Snow-white shirt and snow-white skirt….red-red bag and purple bottle..” “Where is my handkerchief, mommy?”, said the 5 year old girl. “Here.”, said mom and pinned it to the snow-white shirt. “Daddy!!”, she exclaimed, when she saw her Dad come home from work. “Daddy, Daddy, what did you get me?”, said she. “Um…nothing honey, I couldn’t get you anything. I was getting late and I wanted to see you before you left for school”, said Dad. The little girl made a sad face and hugged her Daddy. “Or wait, maybe I could show you something which can make the sullen face brighten up”, said Dad. The little girl looked up and saw a kitkat bar in daddy’s hand. She was ecstatic. “MOMMY, Daddy got me chocolate.”, she said and started jumping around in happiness. “Enough jumping around, come, it’s time for school.” The next thing that happened was her sitting in the auto-rickshaw on her way to school. She reached school. All throughout the class hours, she was thinking about her bar of chocolate, she couldn’t wait to eat it. Lunch break started. She opened her lunch box, it had bread and jam with the Kitkat next to it. Her classmate was sitting next to her. She was eyeing her chocolate. “Give me a little.”, she said. “No, I won’t. It’s a small bar. My daddy got it for me.” “Give me, a little.”, she kept nagging. Finally, the little girl gave her a piece. She ate the rest, savoring it. She looked at her classmate. “I have got mixture.”, said she. “May I have a little?”, asked the little girl. “No, I won’t give you.”, said she. “But you ate my chocolate.”, said the little girl. “So? I am not giving you.”, said her classmate. “Fine.”, said the little girl when she saw blood oozing out of her classmate’s forehead. She took her to the teacher. “Teacher, she has blood on her forehead.”, said the little girl. “How did this happen?”, asked the teacher. “I don’t know, teacher.”, said the little girl. “You have done it, haven’t you?”, asked the teacher with a stern look. “No, teacher.”, said the little girl. “I am going to complain to the principal about you.”, said the teacher. “But, teacher, I didn’t do it. Why will I do it?”, said the little girl. “You are getting more notorious day by day”, said the teacher and even the girl’s classmate didn’t come to her rescue. The Principal came in the next period. She made the little girl stand up in front of the entire class. “Why did you do that to her?”, asked she. “Teacher, I didn’t do it.”, repeated the little girl. She kept denying. She hadn’t done it. She knew that she hadn’t. Her classmate knew that as well. “Which hand did you do it with?”, asked the Principal. “I didn’t do it.”,she said again, now a little scared. “Show me, otherwise, I will call your parents.”, said the Principal. “I didn’t do it. I am speaking the truth.”, she said. “Show me your hand,”, ordered the Principal. She then took the right hand of the little girl and started hitting her with the wooden ruler. After ten hits, she said, “Don’t do it again.” The little girl started weeping. She decided to never talk to her classmate.

Finally, the day came to an end and she reached home. She was so happy to see her parents. She wanted to hold them, cry and tell them what had happened at school. Her mom took her inside and asked “ Why did you do that? “ She was surprised. “ Were you going to hide it from me?”, mom asked with a startled expression. “How did you do it?”, she asked. “I didn’t do it.”, said the little girl for the final time. “Right. Your Principal called me. Tell me how and why you did it.”, she said. The little girl was tired. Tired of saying the truth. So, she thought she should say something else and put an end to the questions. “I stabbed her forehead with a pencil.”, said the girl. “What? Why?”, asked mom. “Because she ate my chocolate and didn’t give me her mixture.” “I don’t know what to do with you. You are not supposed to do such a thing. I am not going to let you enter the house from the next time if you do such a thing.” said mom and left her alone.

15 years later , when the girl recollects this, she wonders as to how she could have proven her innocence. No one believed her. No one tried to. They just believed what they wanted to. The lesson learnt was that Truth doesn’t have value and Truth doesn’t triumph. Lies do.

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