The Tiger in the Tunnel Questions and Answers
by Ruskin Bond

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Give an account of Baldeo's fight with the tiger in the story "The Tiger in the tunnel."

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In "The Tiger in the Tunnel," Baldeo confronts the deadly man-eating tiger in the tunnel after his first month on the job. Even though he has heard the rumors about this dangerous tiger, he is still unafraid to do his job because his family depends upon his wages for their livelihood, and he is skilled with his axe.

The train is late, and Baldeo begins to "nod" in the tunnel. However, he is awakened by the noise of the tiger who is unafraid of the man because he has killed many men previously. There is no possibility of escape, and Baldeo sees the shape of the approaching tiger. Surprising the tiger, Baldeo strikes the first blow on the tiger's shoulder with his prized axe. On the second blow that Baldeo delivers to the tiger, he almost severs the animal's leg. Unfortunately, the axe is stuck in the tiger's body, leaving Baldeo defenseless. In a few minutes, Baldeo is dead, and the tiger is wounded.

Ironically, the train approaches and there is no escape for the tiger. He is dismembered by the train and meets the same fate as Baldeo. Both man and tiger are dead due to the confrontation in the tunnel.

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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An account of Baldeo's confrontation with the tiger in "The Tiger in the Tunnel" would detail his valiant effort despite an unfortunate ending.

Baldeo faced down the tiger with considerable resolve. He knew of the dangerous animals in the jungle.  He also knew the tiger's reputation as being a destroyer of men, preying on them for years. Yet, Baldeo felt confident that he could face down any challenges as he went out in the cold night to do his job as the night watchman.

Even though he was armed with his axe, Baldeo was overmatched as he entered the contest.  The tiger was accustomed to the techniques men used and sized up Baldeo as a "puny man who dared stand in the way."  As the tiger attacked with a quick run and a snarl, Baldeo used his axe to defend himself.  He moved to the side, giving him an angle to cut into the tiger's shoulder. However, the axe remained in the tiger's body, leaving Baldeo without a weapon.  After the tiger regrouped, he leapt upon Baldeo, who could not avoid the advance.  The tiger mauled Baldeo, "tearing at his broken body."  The end came quick for Baldeo, who felt an intense pain down his back and then nothing afterwards.

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