Anyone would shed real tears when a leg or an arm is caught between a crocodile’s jaws; a bite force more brutal than an industrial sledgehammer’s pounding.
The jungle aphorism turned on its head when a 130-year-old, three-metre-long crocodile in a Chhattisgarh village died of natural causes. The whole of Bawamohatra turned up for the burial of their beloved, friendly neighbourhood Gangaram, carrying him on a tractor decked with garlands. He never displayed his crocodilian instincts on humans during his lifetime, and villagers say kids could swim around him without fear.
Gangaram was worshipped, would eat rice and dal served as offering. And all because of this gentle croc (forgive the oxymoron) the sleepy village is known far and wide as magarmachhawala gaon.