Chapter 6 The fight
Comprehension Check (Page 49)
- In what way is the forest pool different from the one which Ranji knew in the Rajputana desert?
The other boy asked Ranji to ‘explain’ himself.
(i) What did he expect Ranji to say?
(ii) Was he, in your opinion, right or wrong to ask this question?
- Between Ranji and the other boy, who is trying to start a quarrel? Give a reason for your answer.
“Then we will have to continue the fight,” said the other.
(i) What made him say that?
(ii) Did the fight continue? If not, why not?
- In the Rajputana desert, the pools were sticky and muddy where women washed clothes or buffaloes wallowed. But forest pool was clean, cold and inviting. So Ranji leapt into the water for swimming.
- (i) The other boy, Suraj, expected Ranji to say ‘sorry’.
(ii) Suraj was a bully. He was wrong to prevent Ranji from using the pool. The pool was common property.
- It is Suraj who starts the quarrel. He asks Ranji to run away from the pool. He even threatens to beat him.
- (i) Suraj spoke the above words because he was tired but he did not want to spare Ranji who refused to accept defeat. So he deferred the fight for the next day.
(ii) No, the fight didn’t continue the next day. Both Suraj and Ranji needed each other’s help, so they compromised. Suraj asked Ranji to teach him to dive and swim under water. While Ranji agreed to become a wrestler with the help of Suraj.
Comprehension Check (Page 53)
- What is it that Ranji finds difficult to explain at home?
Ranji sees his adversary in the bazaar.
(i) What does he wish to do?
(ii) What does he actually do, and why?
- Ranji is not at all eager for a second fight. Why does he go back to the pool, then?
- Who was the better swimmer? How do you know it?
- What surprises the warrior?
- Now that they are at the pool, why don’t they continue the fight?
Ranji’s superiority over the other boy is obvious in the following:
Physical strength:, good diving, his being a fighter, sense of humour, swimming under water, making a good point, willingness to help.
Underline the relevant phrases.
- What, according to you, makes the two adversaries turn into good friends in a matter of minutes? Explain it as you have understood it.
- Ranji had several cuts and bruises on his face and arms. He finds it difficult to explain the injuries at home.
- (i) At first Ranji felt like turning away and look the other way. His second thought was to hit his enemy with the lemonade bottle.
(ii) He actually stands his ground and only scowls at Suraj.
- Ranji decides to go back to the pool to gain self-respect. If he surrenders now, he will be beaten for all time
- Ranji was decidedly the better swimmer. We know it when he swims across the pool as his opponent says. He dived for long into the water.
- Ranji executes another perfect dive. Swimming under water, he circles Suraj and comes upon him from behind. The warrior, Suraj, is surprised to see Ranji’s skill.
- At the pool, the two contestants forgot to continue the fight. Their interest shifts to swimming and swinging (diving).
- Good diving, swimming under water, willingness to help, sense of humour.
- Ranji and Suraj, two adversaries, turned into good friends in a few minutes for a couple of reasons. Both were tired of fighting. Both needed each other’s help, guidance and support. Suraj wanted to learn diving from Ranji. While Ranji liked the idea of becoming a strong wrestler with the help of Suraj.
Exercise (Page 54)
Discuss the following topics in small groups.
Is fighting the only way of resolving differences of opinion? What else can be done to reach a mutually acceptable settlement?
Fighting is not the only way to resolve a dispute. The best course is to start a dialogue with a cool head. In case they fail to agree on any point, they can appoint an arbiter or middleman acceptable to both.
Have you ever been in a serious fight only to realise later that it was unnecessary and futile? Share your experience/views with others frankly and honestly.
People usually quarrel over minor issues which can be resolved over a cup of tea. Such violent quarrels harm both the parties. In a war, no party actually wins. Both suffer equally and feel sorry later on. Every person can recall one or two occasions of this type.
Why do some of us find it necessary to prove that we are better than others? Will you be amused or annoyed to read the following sign at the back of the car in front of you?
I May be going slow but I am ahead of you.
It is our common weakness to do better than others or to pull somebody down. Some pretend to be superior to others and try to hurt them. This is, in fact, a symptom of their inferiority complex. We should avoid ego clash.
MORE QUESTIONS SOLVED
I. SHORT ANSWER TYPE QUESTIONS
How has Rajpur’s summer been described in the lesson ‘The Fight’?
The earth was parched, the grass brown, the trees listless, hardly stirring, waiting for a cool wind or a refreshing shower of rain.
Why did the pool not dry even in the extreme summer?
The pool didn’t dry up like the pools in the plains because the rocks held the water in it.
How did Suraj try to scare away Ranji? Did he get success in his mission?
Suraj tried to scare away Ranji by his strong built and gruff voice. But his effort proved in vain. Ranji, though weaker than Suraj, didn’t feel scared. He came forward bravely and became ready to fight with Suraj.
Where was the second fight occurred. What was its result?
The second fight occurred across waters of the pool. But the two adversaries couldn’t fight for long there. Soon, they became friends because both were tired and needed each other’s help. Ranji promised to teach Suraj the art of swimming and Suraj offered to make Ranji a good wrestler.
II. LONG ANSWER TYPE QUESTIONS
Narrate the episode of the fight between Ranji and Suraj in the forest in about 100-125 words.
Ranji was a thin built boy, fond of swimming. Once he discovered a pool in the forest. It was a hot summer day. He got into the pool. Soon a boy, taller and stronger than him, arrived there. He said that it was his pool and he would swim alone. He tried to frighten Ranji. He called himself a warrior. Ranji stood his ground and proclaimed himself a fighter. The two fought over the right to the pool. Both were tired and exhausted in the very fist fight. In the second fight, they faced each other across the pool. They challenged each other. Ranji was decidedly a better swimmer than Suraj. He could dive and swim under water. He established his superiority over his adversary. Now the two agreed to help each other rather than fight. Ranji promised to teach Suraj the art of swimming. Suraj offered to make Ranji a wrestler. They became friends.
Compare and contrast the character traits of the two adversaries or contestants in the story ‘The Fight’.
Suraj was a tall, thickset wrestler. He was a bully. He proclaimed that he was a warrior and he had exclusive right to swim in the pool. He tried to scare Ranji away. But Ranji had a strong feeling of self respect. He accepted the challenge to fight. He thought if he surrendered he would lose his right to the pool for ever. He suffered cuts and bruises. But he went to the pool ready for a second fight. This time he proved his excellence as a swimmer. Suraj got influenced by Ranji’s art of swimming. He also wanted to be a good swimmer. So he agreed to get training from Ranji and in return make Ranji a wrestler.
In the fight between Ranji and Suraj, who was the winner?
Ranji was physically no match for Suraj, the tall wrestler. Yet they fought over the right to use the pool. Ranji suffered cuts and bruises all over his body, but he refused to surrender or accept defeat. In the first round the fight ended in a draw. Next day they faced each other across the pool for a second round of fight. But Ranji this time proved himself a better swimmer than his adversary. They fought together to learn something worthwhile. They suspended the fight after a while and became good friends. Hence neither was the winner.