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PARTHI UPDATES

Dear Brother

Sairam. These two pieces of News appeared in the The Hindustan Times : 21.1.05 and the The Hindu : 21.1.05 respectively. The first one is related to a devotee of Swami and the second one to Bhagwan's new Water
Project. If you could take some time off, read on..... 

Retd Lt Genís Wife Elected Village Panch
January 19
 
Rajesh Jauhri
 
IT COULD be a pointer towards the way people have begun to look at politics and definitely a big boost to Panchayati Raj. The wife of a retired Lieutenant
General, who took the plunge and contested for the post of panch in Gangalkhedi village Panchayat, has won causing a pleasant and welcome surprise.
 
And because of her status, she could also be made the deputy sarpanch, as the seat is reserved for backward class. However, the small panchayat now has a very well-educated and suave panch to usher in development in her panchayat.
 
Meet Pushpa Malhotra, wife of Lt Gen (retd) S L Malhotra. It was her zeal to work for the society that prompted her to contest the elections. Pushpa's husband, Gen Malhotra, retired from the Indian Army as Director General NCC in 1986 and served as commandant of Infantry School and GOC 26 Div.
 
Born in Karachi in Pakistan, Pushpa's parents migrated to India in 1947 and after her marriage she was involved in several social service activities,
including serving the families of soldiers and civilian employees through Army Wives Welfare Association (AWWA).
 
Talking to Hindustan Times, she said that she started true social work when Gen Malhotra was Deputy MD of Tata International in Dewas, where she
started a small charity school in 1986 with 12 children of tribal labourers of the factory. When she left the school in 1992, the strength had risen
to 400.
 
When asked about the aim she had in mind when contesting the election, she said her first priority would be the uplift of the poor and backward people
of the village through education, cleanliness drive and de-addiction movement.
 
She said that her granddaughter Meghan Pasricha, who is based in the US, was already running an anti-tobacco campaign throughout the world and has
also consented to work in the village for the cause.
 
She said she was already imparting training of sewing and weaving to young girls of the village, which would gain magnitude after her role in the
village Panchayat. Being a disciple of Sathya Sai Baba, she said that she had entered political service by the grace of Sai Baba to serve the deprived, as she used to do in various missions of Sathya Sai Baba in Puttaparthy.
 
Pushpa will be one among 12 panchs, and because of her status, she could be well be made the deputy sarpanch.

(The Hindustan Times : 21.1.05)

**********

"Ex-engineer To Supervise Water Schemes"
 
Hyderabad
Jan. 20.
 
R. Kodala Rao, former engineer-in-chief, Panchayati Raj, has been appointed by the State Government to assist the Satya Sai Central Trust in implementing drinking water supply schemes to the upland areas of
East and West Godavari districts.
 
Mr. Rao is currently advisor to the Government for School Education and Panchayat Raj Departments. 
 
According to an official press release, Mr. Rao will be provided technical assistance by the Chief Engineer (Rural Water Suply) in the formulation and
execution of the schemes, which are expected to cover 500 habitations with 5.5 lakh inhabitants.
 
At the district level, the Collector will head a committee to provide support required by the Trust. This committee will have the Superintendent Engineer
(Rural Water Supply) as member-convenor.

(The Hindu : 21.1.05)
 


Sairam. The past three days have been quite uneventful at the Mandir. Sorry, uneventful is a very wrong word to use in relation to Bhagawan. He comes for Darshan and goes away into the interview room and so we may feel that there is nothing special happening. But there could be nothing farther away from the truth. Every wave of His Hand during Darshan may be answering so many queries, a single nod of His Head may be soothing so many hearts, one Look of His and thousands in that direction are filled with inexplicable joy! What appears as normal Darshan to us is filled with mysterious events and happenings that draw hundreds of His devotees closer to Him. Therefore, we first apologize for using the word uneventful. Let us put it this way: for the past three days, there were no special programmes in Sai Kulwant Hall, nothing visibly happening that we could relate to you.


On 23rd morning, Swami came out only for Bhajans. However, in the evening, Swami came out for Darshan at around 3.15 p.m. and sat outside after a long  gap of several days, giving all of us wonderful Darshan for full one hour. That came as a downpour on the desert like dry hearts of ours owing to the  recent drought!!


On 24th morning again, surprisingly, Bhagawan came out early in the morning at 7.15 a.m. There were very few people even in the Portico as all were used  to Swami's arrival after 8.30 a.m. These are His wonderful ways! He definitely keeps us on our toes!! In the evening, Swami came out by 3.15 p.m. but disappeared immediately into the interview room, only to emerge out for the Bhajans.


On the 25th morning, Bhagawan did not come out for Darshan, but in the evening, He came out at 4.40 p.m. He sat outside and asked the Bhajan boys
to start Bhajans. We had lovely Bhajans till 5.30 p.m. and once again it was a feast to our eyes to watch Him sitting on the sofa and keeping beat to the soul stirring Bhajans!



26th January 2005


26th morning, all students and staff assembled at the Institute for the Flag Hoisting ceremony, marking the 56th Anniversary of the Republic of India. At sharp 7.00 a.m. our Tricolour Flag was hoisted followed by a brief inspiring talk by our revered Vice-Chancellor. Subsequently, we all rushed to the Mandir. Swami came out at 7.55 a.m. As He came and got down on the dais, He spoke to brother Nitin about something. We saw brother Nitin moving towards the Bhajan Hall and then Swami was continuously looking towards the Poornachandra Hall side. We thought that Swami was expecting some guest. There was news that the First Lady of Kazakhstan was arriving at Parthi for  having Bhagawan's Darshan.


Several minutes passed by and Swami kept enquiring about something. We were wondering why the guest was not arriving and were concerned to see Swami  standing and waiting for the arrival. Wow! How important that person could be for Swami to wait so long. Then Swami again called brother Nitin Acharya and signaled towards the boys. Still, we were not clear what was happening.


Finally, the VIP arrived and we could see the delight on Bhagawan's face. Boxes of Perk Chocolates were brought in by the boys into the Portico. My God! So that was what our Divine Mother was waiting for! For our Divine Mother, showering Her Love on Her children is what gives the greatest joy. We thought that Swami was waiting for some VIP - Very Important Person. Least did we know that He was waiting for the VIP - Very Important Prasadam!!


The chocolates were distributed to all the students. Then came Wafers that were distributed to all devotees. Swami was sitting and observing the entire process, giving some instructions and guidance here and there to ensure perfect logistics and delivery! Bhajans started at 8.25 a.m. and went on till 9.15 a.m. By then the distribution of Prasadam was through. All had the sweet chocolates and wafers in their pockets but their attention was on the source of all sweetness - our dear Lord sitting on the sofa with a gentle sway that kept beat with the Bhajans!


In the evening, Swami came out at 3.15 p.m. He got down and came towards the sofa. Would He sit down or would He turn and go back into the interview room? To our delight, He sat down on the sofa amidst loud applause. He spoke to the Warden and then the Vice-Chancellor. It was obvious that Swami was looking for some student to give a talk. The lucky student was Sri Jagadish Chandra, a student from the II M.Sc.(Physics) class. Bhagawan called him  forward and spoke to him. Meanwhile, the mike and the podium were kept in  place. Brother Jagadish went over to the stage and delivered an inspiring talk filled with patriotic feelings, reminding us about our obligation to our sacred Nation and evoking tides of Love for our dear Motherland!


Following him, brother Sudhindran, who is part of the Vedam Chanting core group, was called upon by Bhagawan to translate the Sri Suktam for all of us. The rest of the core group chanted two lines at a time followed by a vivid translation and an occasional explanation about the inner significance of the Vedic utterances. The entire Sri Suktam was chanted in this manner. After brother Sudhindran completed his talk, brother Shashank Shah, who has completed his MBA Course and is now pursuing his M.Phil. at our Institute, was Blessed by Swami to share his thoughts with the audience.


Brother Shashank spoke at length, detailing the major landmarks in the life of our dear Bhagawan, starting right from His declaration to the world about  His Avataarhood, until the latest Chennai Water Project commissioned  coinciding with the 79th Birthday celebrations of Bhagawan. Incidentally, he video describing the Chennai Water Project in detail, produced by the Prashanthi Digital Studios, is available for viewing at www.saicast.org. He completed his talk at 5.05 p.m. Swami called him closer and materialized a gold ring with a green diamond for him and slipped it onto his finger. The  student was filled with great joy and gratitude at this spontaneous Love of
Bhagawan!!


27th January 2005

This morning, Bhagawan came out for Darshan at 7.45 a.m. The First Lady, Her Excellency - Sara Alpysovna of Kazakhstan had arrived yesterday night. She  is the wife of the President - His Excellency - Nursultan Abishevich Nazarbayev of Kazakhstan. She is also the President of "Bobek" Children's Foundation, established in 1992. Bhagawan gave her and her party an audience. The First Lady also visited our Institute with her party members at 11.00 a.m. She went around the various departments and the A.I. Lab,followed by a special session, where the VC gave a talk supported by a video film, explaining the salient features of the Value Based Education offered at our Institute.


In the evening, Swami came out at 3.00 p.m. He first took a group of devotees into the interview room. After a long while, the door opened, but then the First lady of Kazakhstan went in with her team. It was close to 5.00 p.m. when Bhagawan came out and went into the Bhajan Hall. Bhajans began at 5.00 p.m. and at 5.30 p.m. Bhagawan took Aarti and retired to PC. Even as we were moving out of the Sai Kulwant Hall, the convoy of the First Lady of Kazakhstan left the Mandir to make a visit to the Chaitanya Jyothi Museum.


For your information, a few years back, one of our alumni Sri Kshitij Gupte who had completed his MFM from our School of Management was working at Kazakhstan. During that period the First Lady of Kazakhstan had contacted him and had shown keen interest in the Value Based Education imparted to students here. In fact, she had asked him to assist in framing a Value Based Education Model for her country. It was at that time, that he had accompanied the First lady along with her team, in a chartered flight to Prasanthinilayam.


28th January 2005

This morning, Bhagawan came out for Darshan at 7.15 a.m. The team from Kazakhstan was once gain privileged to have an Interview with the Lord that went on till 8.20 a.m. Subsequently, Swami came and sat outside on the sofa. The Kulwant Hall was filled with thousands of devotees from Anantapur District. Around 6000 of them had arrived at Parthi as their part in the 80th Year Celebrations of the advent of Bhagawan. Ladies and Gents wearing badges sat eagerly to have Darshan of the Lord. After Swami sat down, Prof. Anil Kumar took over the mike. There was to be distribution of Sewing Machines and Wet Grinders to the needy people from Anantapur. This was an offering by the devotees of Anantapur to the Sai installed in the hearts of these poor and needy people!


As their names were called out, the candidates, most of them being women and a few men, came over to the front of the dais, bowed down to Swami and
received their tokens of Love. We were not there to witness this scene as it was a working day for us. However, a visiting Professor who was present in the Hall said that it was a very fulfilling event and it was even more meaningful for those who realized that it was not just a sewing machine or a wet grinder that was being offered to the needy but it was a source of income - a source of livelihood for them that would change their whole lives!! Around 100 of them were benefited by these gifts.


At 8.50 a.m., Bhajans were sung by the Gent devotees of Anantapur. This went on till 9.15 a.m. when Swami took Aarti and retired to PC.


In the evening, Swami was out for Darshan by 3.00 p.m. The Anantapur devotees had their backdrop ready for the cultural programme to be presented
by them. Swami got down from the Golf Cart and went inside the interview room. He came out only at 3.50 p.m. He walked to the centre of the dais and sat down on the sofa.


The dance drama to be presented by the Anantapur Samithi children was titled, "Anantha Varadayee Sri Sathya Sai" - "The Bestower of Infinite Boons - Sri Sathya Sai". The dance drama was presented in modules; each module starting with a commentary by a small boy who would come forward and speak in Telugu, with a mock mike. Of course, the commentary and songs were all prerecorded. This would be followed by a dance, the lyrics of which talked about the theme of that module.


The best part of the play was the backdrop, yet one more innovative idea springing up in the Sai Kulwant Hall presentations. All the backdrops, a dozen or more of them, were huge screen printings on canvas, but were all on a continuous canvas sheet. The whole sheet was rolled up on an axle and was rolled down one after the other as the scene would begin. This kept the backdrop firm and tight enough between the two axles, and the rolling was a very easy and smooth way to bring in the next scene!! Hats off to this creative idea being implemented for the first time by the Anantapur Samithi
organizers.


The first module spoke about the Lord as the one who bestows infinite boons on humanity. The second module was on the Educational Institutions started by Swami. The backdrop was a beautiful photograph of our Administrative Block and on top was written - Om Sri Sai Vidya Dayine Namaha - Sai the Bestower of Vidya (Knowledge). Towards the end of the dance for thismodule, we had young boys coming in with small banners in their hands exhibiting the photographs of the various educational institutions started by Swami, the ones at Parthi, Bukkapatnam, Kothacheruvu, Anantapur, etc.


The third module was on the Super Specialty Hospitals. The scene at the back
had this written on the top - Om Sri Sai Arogyapradaya Namaha - Sai the Bestower of Health. This was followed by Om Sri Sai Deenajana Poshanaya Namaha - Sai the Caretaker of the Poor and the Needy - which talked about the Deenajanodarana Pathakam - the orphanage started by Swami. The fifth module was - Om Sri Sai Annavastradaya Namaha - Sai the Bestower of Food and Clothes. This covered the Grama Seva, construction of Kalyana Mantapams in villages and other services to the poor and needy.


The sixth module, needless to say was - Om Sri Sai Jeevadharaya Namaha - Sai the Support of our Life - depicting the Water Project Gift of Bhagawan. The first backdrop for this module was a lone villager sitting on a dry parched
land with huge cracks that mercilessly cracked the hearts of these poor folk. Then came in a make shift well, that was fully dry and a tree with no leaves. Following the dance, came the next scene of Swami's Water Project Tanks, and a group of girls rushing in with blue saris in their hands making wave like patterns! Sai Ganga had gushed in to save the thirsty villagers!!


The final scene was a dance with the backdrop reading - Om Sri Sai Jagad Rakshakaya Namaha - Sai the Protector of the Universe! The dance drama came  to a close at 4.30 p.m. All the participants assembled in front of the dais. Swami got up from the sofa and got down the steps to Bless them with group by group photographs amidst loud applause. The organizers too, both Ladies and Gents were lucky to manage a photograph with Swami.


As Swami went and sat down on the sofa, classical songs filled the air of Sai Kulwant Hall. Both the men and women rendered three songs. Bhagawan signaled for the Aarti. It was 4.55 p.m. when our dear Lord, having satisfied all the devotees from Anantapur by giving them an opportunity to perform in His Presence and saturating their hearts with Bliss and Joy, retired to PC. Day after day is ticking by as we approach the 80th Birthday of our Beloved Bhagawan. Let us see what comes next in His Agenda!. We will get back to you soon.
 

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