India is a country of fascinating tales. Stories of mystical and mythical creatures – witches, ghouls, Djinns, and what not! These characters are often encountered in the stories that grandmothers retell to their grandchildren, if not in a face to face encounter (and somehow, it’s better that way). There’s one such story surrounding the vibrant and ever-busy city of Bangalore, from a time when it wasn’t so vibrant and so busy.
Our Central Character: A Witch
This dates back to the 1990s, when the word was out of a witch that was visiting random houses in Bangalore (reportedly Malleshwaram & Rajajinagar) at night, knocking on the door and calling out to the person inside. To make it more interesting, she’d call out to them in the voice of their relatives, especially their mothers. The innocent and clueless person would then open the door and die in the next 24 hours.
This urban legend spread like wildfire, especially since the city hadn’t yet received the IT industry touch-up that was soon to happen to it. Panic was the next response of the masses with people having no clue what to do, much less asking if there was even an iota of truth to this. School children, chit-chatty people, and newspaper – everyone carried the same story.
So, how did they stop it?
Sounds interesting so far, right? Well, there is a lot more your way! Okay, the way out that people discovered is as strange as the story itself. Someone figured out that writing Nale ba (come tomorrow, in Kannada the local language) came to their rescue as the witch would arrive at the doorstep, see the inscription, and turn away for the night.
This eventually led to April 1st being referred to as the Nale Ba Day amongst locals.
It became a tradition for many families to write ‘Nale Ba’ outside their houses so as to ward off the evil spirit. They would keep a regular check on the inscription just to make sure that it was there. There was nothing that could be left to chance, especially if someone from the family who was unaware of this lore would bear the wrath of this witch.
With time, this story became a distant memory as the newer generation didn’t believe in things like these. The story is more than 20 years old now and is long gone. However, there’s only so far that India has come from urban legends and folklore with the older generations still subscribing to these stories. But since the times are quickly changing (and so should we), let’s just stick to a few pointers:
- There have been stories going around for ages, and they’ll take some time to die out.
- Science has had an explanation for many such phenomena. Most of these, in fact, have been termed fraudulent.
- Ultimately, the secret is to keep your eyes and ears open and be ready to defend yourself when the need arises. That’s because:
There have been occurrences in the past wherein criminals have struck fear in hearts of masses through these folklore’s, and continued with their sprees, only to be discovered later.
With that, we wrap up this post. Stay safe, stay vigilant, and have a good time. Good night folks!
Oh wait, there’s someone knocking at the door.
*Chair pulled back*