Jumman Mian and Algoo Chowdhary were best friends. They were known for the steadfastness of their friendship, which spanned years and myriad situations.
Jumman Shaikh inherited his aunt’s property. She was old and had no one to care for her. She gave it to him on the rider that he would attend to her. Jumman Mian agreed. He tried his best to take care of the aunt but she was dissatisfied. She demanded her property back. Jumman found this unfair. The villagers decided upon calling an arbitrator.
Both parties were asked to nominate a person. Jumman immediately nominated his friend Algoo. His aunt agreed. She said : Anyone sitting on the chair of Panch is impartial. He is like parmeshvar. So it doesn’t matter who it is. Jumman was happy, expecting an outcome in his favor.
Algoo patiently heard both sides. The aunt explained how she was dissatisfied with Jumman’s care-taking. Jumman explained how his resources were limited and that he provided the best care possible for him.
Algoo concluded that the aunt had given her limited property to Jumman expecting that all her needs would be fulfilled. And since Jumman was unable care for her adequately, he should return the aunt’s property.
It was a fair decision. But Jumman felt cheated. And it was the end of the road for Jumman and Algoo’s friendship.
Life went by and came around.
Algoo Chowdhary happened to sell a drought-bull to a villager. The deal was fixed at rupees 500/-. But the customer begged and spoke of his inability to pay immediately. Algoo was kind-hearted and allowed him a time of three months to pay. Meanwhile the bull happened to die within two months. Now the customer refused to pay: If there’s no animal, then whats the question of payment? A deadlock had been reached. It was decided to settle the dispute with help of an arbitrator.
Both parties were asked to nominate a candidate. The customer nominated Jumman Shaikh immediately. Algoo, using the rationale of Jumman Mian’s aunt said: Anyone in the seat of Panch is Parmeshvar himself, agreed.
Jumman heard both sides patiently. The customer explained how could he make payments for something that did not even exist anymore. Algoo explained that the bull was healthy when it was sold. The customer made him slog hard without regard for its diet or health. He beat the bull regularly and ruthlessly. It was one such that the half-fed bull under heavy load and heartless beating, collapsed.
Jumman concluded that a healthy bull had been sold, the amount.was fair and all villagers knew about the transaction. Had the payment been made immediately, this arbitration wouldn’t even be needed. The panchayat concludes the payment be made.
The decision was fair. And this time, it bought the two friends back together.