Birbal the Wise - XIIISituation puzzles (sometimes called lateral thinking puzzles) are ones where you need to ask lots of yes or no questions to figure out what happened in the situation. These are good puzzles for groups where one person knows the puzzle and answers the questions.
Emperor Akbar once ruled over India. He was a wise and intelligent ruler, and he had in his court the Nine Gems, his nine advisors, who were each known for a particular skill. One of these Gems was Birbal, known for his wit and wisdom. The story below is one of the examples of his wit. Do you have it in you to find out the answer?
One day, a dishonest, one-eyed man wanted to punish Birbal. He accused him of stealing his 24 karat gold necklace and reported this theft to the police. The case was brought to the high court where the judge knew Birbal very well, and he also knew that he was not a thief. So, he asked the man, "What makes you think that Birbal stole your necklace?"
"Your Honor, with my own one eye, I saw him stealing the necklace," the man swiftly replied. Then he stated, "If he is innocent, let him prove it. Allow me to bring a hot iron, and if he can hold it in his bare hands, then I will be satisfied that he didn't take my necklace and isn't lying to me."
A confused Birbal said, "You mean that if I'm telling the truth, I will not burn my hands with that red hot iron?"
"Of course not! God will then protect you," the man strongly declared in front of a nodding crowd.
It would seem as if Birbal couldn't do anything but hold the red hot iron which would undoubtedly burn him whether he was telling the truth or lying. However, he came up with another one of his witty replies on the spot.
Can you guess what he said?
AnswerCalmly, Birbal stated, "I am ready for that, if you believe that I will not be burnt, but the same should apply to you also. If you aren't lying, the hot iron should not burn your hands either. So, you can kindly bring that red hot iron, holding it in both of your hands, and then give it to me to hold it."
The speechless man quickly told the judge he would search in his house again, bowed, left, and never lied against Birbal again.
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