The Ramayana describes Nila as the commander-in-chief of the monkey army, under the king Sugriva. Sugriva orders Nila to assemble the monkeys so that they can be sent to locate Sita. The epic specifics Nila as a member of the search party that headed in the southern direction. Nila is mentioned as one of four monkeys powerful enough to cross the ocean between India and Lanka. In the narrative, Hanuman, Rama’s devotee and monkey general is chosen to fly to Lanka and search for Sita, which he succeeds in accomplishing. Nila is ordered by Sugriva to find a route to Lanka, through which plenty of food is available. Sugriva and Nila also issue directives to the army to march.