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Iswaran- The Storyteller | Class IX | English

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NCERT Solution

Extra Questions


  • This story is about a skillful and a seasoned story-teller by the name of Iswaran who can persuade his audience into believing the story that he narrates with an element of suspense and thrill.

  • So convincing is the story Iswaran tells Mahendra, his employer, that he immediately starts believing even the most fictional and improbable story.

  • In spite of being the educated man with modern outlook Mahendra listens to the story and anecdotes narrated by Iswaran with rapt attention.


  • This story is narrated to Ganesh by a young man Mahendra who was a supervisor in a firm.

  • His job was to keep an eye on the activities at the work site.

  • As he was a bachelor, his cook, Iswaran, always accompanied him where ever he went.

  • Iswaran used to read the popular Tamil thrilling stories.

  • His own description was greatly influenced by Tamil stories.

  • He weaved endless stories and substituted television in Mahendra’s life.

  • He narrated the tale of a Tusker, which destroyed everything on the way and how he made the elephant collapse in the end by hitting him on the toenail with a small cane.

  • Iswaran linked the auspicious full moon night to the story of a female ghost.

  • Mahendra reprimanded him explaining such stories as baseless.

  • One night Mahendra heard some wailing sound near his window.

  • Mahendra saw a cloudy figure holding a bundle.

  • This incident scared Mahendra who could not sleep on that night.

  • Next morning Iswaran greeted him and asked him about the last night experience.

  • Mahendra resolved to leave the haunted place the very next day.

NCERT Solution:

Think About It (Page18)

Q1.In What way is Iswaran an asset to Mahendra?

Ans: Iswaran being attached to Mahendra accompanied him wherever he was posted. He cooked for Mahendra, washed his clothes and chatted away with him at night. He was a great source of entertainment for Mahendra and could weave out endless stories and anecdotes on various subjects.

Q2. How does Iswaran describe the uprooted tree on the highway? what effect does he want to create in his listeners?

Ans: Iswaran was a seasoned storyteller. While describing an uprooted tress he made use of literary language saying that on a deserted road he spotted something that looked like an enormous bushy beast lying sprawled across the road. He was alone and was about to leave the spot. As he came closer, he saw a fallen tree with its dry branches spread out.

With his dramatic gesture and inimitable style he blended the element of suspense and surprise in his narration to make the story convincing for the listeners.

Q3. How does he narrate the story of the tusker? Does it appear to be plausible?

Ans: Iswaran starts the story of the tusker with a prologue and calls elephants 'huge well-fed beasts.' With an element of hyperbole he narrates the story. Once a tusker, having escaped run away from the timer year, stamped on bushes, tore up wild creepers and broke the branches of the trees. He then entered the school ground caused havoc by uprooting the football goal post ,tore down the volleyball net, flattened the drum kept for water and pulled out the shrubs. The teachers climbed to the terrace of the school building. Suddenly, Iswaran as a child became fearless, grabbed a can from a teacher and confronted the tusker. He hit its third toenail and the beast collapsed.He claimed that he had used the Japanese art to control the tusker.

The story appears to be totally implausible as it is next to impossible for a child to tame a wild a wild elephant.

Q4. Why does the author say that Iswaran seemed to more than make up for the absence of a TV in Mahendra's living quarters?

Ans Iswaran is a great source of entertainment for Mahendra. Not a single day has passed without Iswaran narrating a story packed with adventure, horror and suspense. Mahendra enjoys listening to the story due to the inimitable way in which Iswaran narrates it to him. Thus Iswaran compensates the absence of TV in Mahendra's living quarters.

5. Mahendra calls ghosts or spirits a figment of the imagination. What happens to him on a full-moon night?

Ans. Mahendra calls ghosts or spirits a figment of the imagination as he did not believe in

ghosts. One day Iswaran told him about a female ghost holding a foetus in her arms. On a full-moon night he woke up from his sleep and looked outside the window. He got shocked to see a dark cloudy form clutching a bundle. Mahendra broke into a cold sweat and fell back on the pillow with a heavy panting.

6. Can you think of some other ending for the story?

Ans. The story ends with Mahendra’s determination to leave the haunted place. In my opinion, Mahindra should have investigated about the cause for the presence of a ghost. It was more convincing if the story ended with the discovery by Mahendra that Iswaran himself disguised as a female ghost in order to convince Mahendra that there is a ghost in the locality.

Extra Questions to be added very soon



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