Several courtiers were vying to be the Royal Advisor of Emperor Akbar. So one day, when they came to the court, they said to the Emperor, “We want to be your Royal Advisor.” Akbar said, “No problem, but you will have to pass the test before you could be my Royal Advisor. And whoever would pass the test will be appointed my Advisor.” They agreed.
The King unfastened his waist cloth and lay down on the floor, and asked the candidates to cover him with that cloth from head to toe. Now everybody tried to cover him, but in vain. If one wanted to cover the head, then feet remained uncovered, or if the feet were covered, then his head remained open.
Just then Birbal entered the court, the king asked Birbal also, if he could cover him with that cloth from head to toe. Birbal paused a moment, then asked the Emperor politely, “Huzoor, Could you pull up your knees a little bit?” The King did so, and Birbal could cover him from head to toe with that cloth.
Realizing that they failed the test, the courtiers left the court quietly and then they never thought about being the King’s Advisor.