Page:Isvar Chandra Vidyasagar, a story of his life and work.djvu/651

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ISVAR CHANDRA VIDYASAGAR.

other Indians had their heads covered with turbans, except the Bengalees. They enquired of Vidyasagar the cause of it. He smiled, and replied,—'When the Bengalees failed to do anything for their father-land, they gave up wearing turbans and thus lightened the weight of its burden.' This, was, no doubt, a merry joke, but very cutting indeed.

One Abhiram Mandal, a Santbal, was employed by Vidyasagar as his chief gardener at Karmatar. The poor savage was a great favourite with his master on account of his truthfulness and honesty. Vidyasagar sometimes sent to him clothes for distribution and cash remittances for payment of monthly allowances to the poor Santhals.

The Santhals were quite enamoured of him. Whenever they heard a report of his intended visit, they looked out anxiously for his arrival, and as soon as he arrived, they flocked tohim with their little presents—some with gourds, some with cucumbers, some with brinjals, and some with other vegetables of the like nature. A poor Santhal having nothing else to offer to his dear benefactor, brought a cock-fowl for him. Vidyasagar smiled, and producing his holy thread, said to the innocent savage,—'You see I am a Brahman. I cannot accept your present' The poor Santhal at once burst into tears, and insisted on his acceptance of the fowl Vidyasagar's.

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