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Features | Experience of the Divinity of Bhagavan by Devotees | Group VII | Mr. Anantakumar Pandey

Mr. Anantakumar Pandey,
C/o Mr. G.S.Sriranga Rajan,
Sri Sathya Sai Senior Boys Hostel,
Prasanthi Nilayam - 515134.

      Mr. Anantakumar Pandey (22), a student, relates a few of his experiences of the Divinity of Bhagavan in his own words.

'I hail from a village called Pandey Pipara in Bihar. I lost my mother when I was just six years old. My grandmother used to take care of me. But she, too, passed away when I was 11 years old. My father who was living with another lady in another village came to attend the funeral and took me with him. There the lady with whom my father was staying did not take my arrival kindly. I suffered there a lot. One day she gave me poison with a view to getting rid of me. By 9 p.m. I was vomiting blood. I was frightened to be in that house. Quietly, I escaped and walked into the wilderness. It was quite dark. I was on my way to Amarkanta. The path was through a forest, I was tired and the effect of poison was there. So I fell unconscious. Then I was about 12 years old.

Near that place was the ashram of Kalyan Baba. Some students from that ashram came there for morning exercise and games. They saw me and admitted me in a hospital. They also informed the police. As I got medical help before it was too late, I survived. Police asked me about my name, parents' names, etc. I gave the address of my father's sister who was in Bijure in Madhya Pradesh. They sent me there. Though my aunt accepted me, I felt I was a burden to her. But I had strong yearning to study. I joined a school there. I began to take up tuitions for primary classes. My teachers encouraged me. I wanted to live on my own by doing odd jobs to anyone who was willing to pay me.

One day I asked my Hindi teacher about a ring he was wearing. It carried a picture of some one.

'This is Shirdi Sai Baba' he told me, 'he is God. He is reborn as Sri Sathya Sai Baba, now in Puttaparthi.' He showed me a photograph of Sri Sathya Sai also.

'I want a photograph of this Avatar' I thought. One day the Manager of the Central Bank who used to help me gave me a photograph. 'Keep this always with you' he said. He also gave me a book on Lord Subrahmanya. When I took the photograph, it was of Sri Sathya Sai! I was overwhelmed with joy. Swami came into my life thus.

I used to worship Bhagavan daily. One day I noticed a small quantity of vibhuti on the photograph. After a few days, the head of Bhagavan in the photograph was full of vibhuti. I told my Hindi teacher.

'I will take you to Prasanthi Nilayam one day' he assured me.

I came out of my aunt's house. The life of a destitute was not to my liking. I rented a room for Rs. 40 a month. My teachers helped me. I used to teach a few children while I was studying. I was paid for it Rs. 480. It was unexpected. I went to the Railway Reservation Counter to reserve my ticket to Puttaparthi. The money I had was not enough for to and fro charges. I could go to Parthi, but what about the return and expenses there?

'If you go in a group' the counter clerk told me, 'you will get 50% concession. You will get concession as a student also'. Then the amount I had would be sufficient for to and fro expenses. The convenor of Sri Sathya Sai Seva Samithi of Katni helped me by signing the reservation form. So I got 50% concession. At last, I came to Prasanthi Nilayam. It is on February 16, 2000 that I first came to Prasanthi Nilayam. I had darshan. Swami came to me during darshan and asked me in Hindi 'where did you come from?' I could not reply audibly due to emotion. 'Where did you come from?' Swami repeated. After a while, He repeated for the third time. Then He asked 'padtha hai? (Are you studying?)', and touched my cheek softly.

On February 17, 2000, He came again to me. He put His hand on my head and blessed. He materialised vibhuti and gave me. He allowed me to take padanamaskar. As He touched my head, I went into a trance-like ecstasy.

On Mahasivarathri day, February 21, 2000, I had the good fortune to watch lingodbhavam.

Later, I don't know how it happened that Mr. S.K.Sachdeva, State President, Sri Sathya Sai Seva Organization, Madhya Pradesh called the convenor of Katni and told him to bring me to Indore. Afterwards, I was told that Mr. S.K.Urmila, the then Manager, Central Bank of India had suggested it to Mr. Sachdeva. Mr. Urmila had been of great help to me earlier.

Thus, I was sent to Indore where I was admitted to B.Sc. (Final year) in 2002.

During the final exam time, I had an attack of typhoid. I was on bed for one full month. I was praying to Swami to bless me take the exams despite my poor health. I insisted on writing the exams. Finally I was allowed to go to the exam hall under medical supervision. I wrote the exams being literally under the drip. Last day, after the exam, I had stomach pain. Doctor gave me some medicine. I slept well that day. When I woke up, there was vibhuti all over my body, on my table, books, bed, and on the photograph of Bhagavan. Everyone was wonderstruck.

I came to Prasanthi Nilayam again in July - August 2002 for the International Conference. On August 13, 2002, I was on duty near Swami's residence on the side of the ladies gate. Swami came out. 'How are you feeling' He asked me. I was weak. Swami looked at me seriously. When He looked into my eyes, I saw sharp rays emanating from His eyes and merging in mine. I felt as if I had touched a high voltage wire.

On August 14, Swami was coming for darshan. He looked at me and smiled. I was profusely sweating. So, looking at Swami, I pulled out my handkerchief to wipe out the sweat. To my surprise, there was an apple in the hanky. How did it come into my pocket and, that too, into the hanky?

On August 16, Swami came to me in darshan. I had a letter for Him in my hand. He came to me and took it. In the process, he held my hand in His hand for a few seconds.

I came to Prasanthi Nilayam on November 12, 2005 and stayed here for one month and a half. During that period I gave to Swami 189 letters and He took all. I never wrote in my letters any of my personal problems.

I propose to study M.Sc. in Tirupati. There also I propose to undertake tuitions and odd jobs and study on my own earnings. It is, indeed, a Sai miracle that one, being a destitute, has come up to post-graduation level on one's own.'

-- Mr. Anantakumar Pandey

        (As narrated to Mr. B. Parvatala Rao at Brindavan on 05.06.2006)