The Ghost in the Forest

Strange noises in the dark? Strange lights moving in the forest? It might not be the sinister phenomenon that you think it is!

In folklore, a forest is sometimes described as a den where ghosts dwell. And though these are mere stories, it’s easy to believe that spirits are at play here, especially in the night with the moonlight streaming through the swaying trees , and branches that form chairs for things we probably can’t see.

Whether you believe in ghosts or not, this true story will surely leave you astonished.

A few years ago, adivasis lived in small huts, around the dense forest of Melghat in the Vidharbha district of Maharashtra. There was a government bungalow near these huts that was reserved for the forest officer. This royal bungalow was appropriately named ‘Bhoot Bungla’.

People who lived around said, “The nights in the forest are very dark as there is no electricity. The calls of an owl, fox and sometimes even the tiger are familiar to us but there comes an unusual sound from the bungalow, a sort of ‘chhan chhan chhan’ like that of a ghungroo. Surely, it is a ghost who wants our lives.”

When Maruti Chitampalli, the state forest officer of Vidharbha was asked if he had experienced this haunting, he replied, “Yes,many times. I have even seen the ghost. Our servant had a pet mongoose baby. He had tied a ghungroo around his neck. The mongoose soon grew up and started to wander all over the forest. But sometimes, mostly at night, it returns to the home that it has been born and brought up in. As he runs around, the ghungroo around his neck makes the ‘chhan chhan’ sound, giving rise to the ghost rumors.”

So, the next time you get up at night due to a scary noise, it could very well be a cat or a dog walking about.

The best thing to do would be to go back to sleep!

This originally appeared in the 2013 September/October issue of Saevus magazine in the Fawn Station segment.

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