THE Princes and Seeta, following Agastya's instruction, took the way to
On the way they met a huge figure perched on a big tree.
They took it to be a Raakshasa.
"Who are you?" asked Raama in an
angry tone. The vulture however answered in a voice full of mildness and affection:
"My child, I am your father's aged friend." Then he proceeded to tell his story.
Jataayu was the brother of Sampaati, the
son of Aruna the dawn-god, who was brother to Garuda the great Eagle-vehicle of Vishnu.
He said: "When you leave Seeta alone
and go hunting in the forest, I shall be looking after her safety."
The prince was pleased and accepted the
offer of the bird with gratitude. They then proceeded on their journey.