Once upon a time a foolish brahmin came to visit Birbal with a strange request. He wanted to be addressed as ‘pandit’. Now, the term ‘pandit’ refers to a man of learning. But unfortunately this poor brahmin was uneducated. Birbal tried to explain the difference to him saying that it was not correct to call an uneducated man a pandit and because of this very reason it would be improper to call him so. But the silly brahmin had his heart set on this title.
So, as usual, Birbal had a brilliant idea. He said that as the brahmin was an uneducated man he should hurl abuses and stones at anyone who dared to address him by the very same title he wanted. Then Birbal called all his servants to himself and ordered them to call this lowly brahmin a pandit. The brahmin was very pleased. But the moment the servants started calling out to him as ‘pandit’ he pretended to be very angry and started to abuse them loudly. Then he picked up a few stones and hurled them in their direction. All as per clever Birbal’s advice.
All this shouting and screaming drew a crowd. When people realised that this brahmin was erupting every time anyone called him ‘pandit’, they all started to tease him. Over the next couple of days, he would constantly hear the refrain ‘pandit’ wherever he went. Very soon the whole town started referring to him as ‘pandit’ much to his delight.
The foolish brahmin never realised why people were calling him in this manner. And was extremely pleased with the result. He thanked Birbal from the very bottom of his foolish heart.