R.K. Narayan Old Man of the Temple Summary - GetSetNotes

R.K. Narayan Old Man of the Temple Summary

The narrator engages a taxi driver named Doss to travel from Malgudi to Kumbum, a distance of fifty miles. Doss is described as a well-behaved and obedient driver, preferred by the narrator for his good judgment and sobriety.

While passing through the village of Koopal, Doss swerves the car and claims to have seen an old man trying to kill himself. The narrator investigates but finds no one near an old temple in ruins.

Doss’s behavior becomes increasingly strange, with changes in his voice and demeanor. Doss eventually gets out of the car and heads towards the temple, claiming to be Krishna Battar, the builder of the temple.

Krishna Battar believes he is living in a different time period and mentions a king named Vishnu Varma. The narrator realizes that Krishna Battar is delusional and tries to engage him in conversation. Krishna Battar laughs uncontrollably and mentions that people are becoming less godly in the present time.

The story revolves around a conversation between the narrator and a man named Krishna Batta, who the narrator believes to be dead. Despite Krishna Batta’s disbelief, the narrator tries to convince him that he is deceased, citing his longevity and lack of sense of time as evidence.

Krishna Batta recounts a story of being attacked by robbers and left for dead, only to return to a temple where he has remained since. The narrator urges Krishna Batta to think of his deceased wife, Seetha, which prompts a dramatic reaction from Krishna Batta. He collapses and appears to pass away, leading the narrator to seek help from a nearby family.

The family shares stories of a mysterious knocking at their doors, which the narrator attributes to Krishna Batta’s presence. After the narrator’s intervention, the knocking ceases, suggesting that Krishna Batta and his wife have found peace and moved on.

R.K. Narayan Out of Business Summary

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