How an Army of Langurs Ousted Us From a Jaipur Fort
How a bunch of grown humans between the ages of 20-25 were ousted by a gang of primates from a Jaipur Fort.
It was truly Kafkaesque — in perhaps the scariest persecution humans may have ever faced at the hands of langurs, a bunch of grown humans between the ages of 20-25, were ousted by a gang of primates from a Jaipur fort.
This happened, when we were visiting (or rather, attempting to visit) the Jaigarh Fort in Jaipur during the Christmas weekend last year.
Just to be clear, we weren’t rowdy Delhiites. We were just travellers (okay, tourists) minding our own business – a gang of girls trying to have some fun, take in a little bit of history, and hopefully, lots of photographs.
As we arrived at the entrance of the fort, we were impressed by the red beauty that lay ahead, atop a magnificent highland called Cheel ka Teela (Hill of Eagles) on the Aravalli range.
After climbing huge stairs, we got to a vantage point from where we could enjoy a good view of the city. Just as we were about to open our cola bottles, my friend got a resounding slap on her back.
Turns out a huge langur had stepped on her back while leaping to a nearby point.
Don’t get us wrong. We aren’t langur-haters or anything. In fact, we had just had a delightful langur for company just the day before at Amer Fort’s Cafe Coffee Day. He especially loved the cookies we offered and even pouted for us when we left.
But the langurs at Jaigarh Fort were angry young men — Rowdy Rathores — an assembly line of Deewar’s Amitabh Bachchans and Arnab Goswamis. There were roughly about 100 of them, all foul-tempered and very destructive.
They thrashed aside a bike, making it fall. And one of them even pushed a guileless auntyji, making her fall quite badly. Mind you, the langurs at Jaigarh Fort weren’t after food. These homicidal four-legged-monsters had another agenda.
They wanted to mark their territory. They wanted to show us who’s the boss. They wanted to scare the hell out of us for their own sinister amusement.
These langurs were an army! And any human present inside Jaigarh Fort was their enemy. I could swear I saw them signal to each other what “military posts” to occupy. They knew they had the numerical strength, enough at least to make us feel cornered.
Within 15 minutes, we accepted defeat and beat a hasty retreat. The enemy was far too dangerous and hostile. Out of the fort we were, bewildered by what just happened.
If langurs could talk, I’m sure, their leader would have delivered Bhiku Mhatre’s now iconic dialogue, “Jaigarh ka king kaun.....”, against the background score of The Godfather.
My friend, an intrepid reporter and an aspiring filmmaker, had wanted to stay back to shoot the entire incident, but the risk-averse grandmother in me protested, asking her to just GTHO (get the hell out).
After exiting the fort, I tried to confront the guards, but was promptly told off, “Madam hum insaanon ko guard karte hain, languron ko nahin (we guard humans, not langurs).
Evolution may have made homo sapiens the boss, but as I gathered from my experience at the Jaigarh Fort, the monkey race is preparing for an all-out rebellion. We better watch out.
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