Ranjan is playful, friendly, funny, mischievous, and clever. He is also very hyperactive and occasionally slightly foolish and dim-witted. Although he tries to be as brave as his older brother Mowgli and constantly thinks he can survive in the jungle on his own and defeat Shere Khan, when the big moment arrives he finds the situation too big for him to handle and tries to avoid it whatever way he can.
Ranjan looks up to Mowgli as an older brother (not just as an adopted brother). Ranjan is the "little tyke" of the cast because he is influenced by Mowgli's stories to be a wild, fun loving child. But he can, in fact, be serious when he has to. For example, when Shanti was hypnotized by Kaa, Ranjan promptly beats him with a stick, saving Shanti's life. Ranjan sees Shanti as a responsible sister, giving him a reason to allow her to hold his hand. Although when he sees a sign that Mowgli was near, Ranjan darts off without a care in the world. At the end of the film, he is seen playing with Bagheera's tail before riding on top of him.
Ranjan somewhat looks like a younger and smaller version of Mowgli: with similar hair, body shape, more playfulness, desire to go to the jungle, and even wears a rubber loincloth exactly like Mowgli does (except Ranjan's is turquoise instead of red) and, like Mowgli, he is barefooted.
Ranjan is the toddler son of the village Chief and Messua. He appears at the beginning of the film watching Mowgli's puppet show about how his life was in the jungle, as his older brother Mowgli tells about Shere Khan, Ranjan jumps onto the projection screen trying to attack Khan, resulting in the screen falling apart and on top of him. Mowgli comes and secretly talks to Ranjan about their plan for tomorrow and shortly after, they both go to bed.
The next day, Ranjan, (using a hammock as a slingshot) wakes up Mowgli and they both sneak past their parents, by saying they were going to do their chores.
Ranjan is later seen scaring Shanti by disguising himself like an animal and jumping out at her. Shanti (not liking the prank) tells Ranjan that Mowgli's a bad influence for him and that the village was better than the jungle. Mowgli tells Ranjan about "The Jungle Rhythm" as Ranjan, Mowgli, and the rest of the village boys sing and dance their way to the jungle until Shanti tells them to stop and Mowgli gets punished.
Ranjan is partly seen watching (from his house) the villagers battle Shere Khan and as he starts following Shanti into the jungle.
Ranjan later saves Shanti from Kaa (by pulling Shanti out of the way and sending Kaa sliding down a cliff). Shanti tries to tell Ranjan he needs to go back to the village, but Ranjan refuses and says they need to find Mowgli, Shanti then decides to let Ranjan help her.
Later Shanti tries to see where they've been and where they haven't, Ranjan slides down a branch into some mangos and finds a peeled mango skin with a hole in the middle, revealing that Mowgli or something else had been there.
As Ranjan searches for Mowgli, he soon gets tired, so Shanti carries him on her back. Shortly after, he hears Shanti say that she heard Mowgli, which causes Ranjan to run off and fortunately find Mowgli. When Mowgli gets tangled in vines, Ranjan tries to help Shanti get him out but doesn't do very well.
When Baloo tries to scare Shanti, Ranjan appears to be the only one scared, so Shanti takes Ranjan away, when Mowgli follows them, all three encounter and get chased by Shere Khan.
After Shanti and Ranjan hide behind some bushes, Shanti tells Ranjan to stay there while she helps Mowgli. Ranjan tries to follow Shanti, but his loincloth snags on the tip of a small branch and he gets flung into the air backward. After sliding into Baloo's leg, Ranjan tries to run away, but Baloo lifts him off the ground (by his loincloth) and asks him where Mowgli is. Ranjan says "Shere Khan!" And Baloo puts Ranjan on his shoulders as they both chase after Mowgli.
While running, they're both noticed by Bagheera, as they tell him what's happening. Once they arrive at the temple, Ranjan is given to Bagheera as Baloo goes to help Mowgli.
After Khan is defeated, Mowgli introduces Ranjan to his friends. After noticing other villagers in the distance, the kids return to the village.
After getting past his parents and into the jungle, Ranjan is last seen trying to catch Bagheera's tail, before riding atop his back.
- Ranjan getting his loincloth stuck on a branch is a reference to the first movie when Bagheera tries to drag Mowgli to the Man-Village with his jaws.
- While Ranjan wasn't in both Rudyard Kipling's Jungle Book stories, there is a unnamed baby child of Messua that appeared in The Second Jungle Book's story, "The Spring Running." It's possible that Ranjan is the Disney adaption of that baby child.