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Monday, May 2, 2011

Sachin Tendulkar to donate Sai marble statue.

PUTTAPARTHI: Cricketer Sachin Tendulkar is keen to pay ‘guru dakshina’ to Sathya Sai Baba. He is likely to donate the entire amount required for a marble statue of the Baba which is to be erected on or beside the Maha Samadhi. According to sources, the statue may cost around Rs 30 lakh. The Sathya Sai Central Trust is yet to accept the offer and make an official announcement to that effect.

Tendulkar broke down after Sai’s death and rushed with his family from Hyderabad to Puttaparthi to pay his last respects to Sai. The Trust, which met at IT Bhavan of Sathya Sai Nilayam on Sunday, could not come to a decision on the installation of the statue and will discuss it at its next meeting on May 8 or 9.

It will also discuss the heir to Sai Baba and the cheque-signing authority at the next meeting.The meeting decided to make arrangements for the tenth day ceremony of Baba on May 4 as several VIPs from across the country are likely to attend. It also resolved to celebrate the birth anniversary of Sai’s mother Eswaramma on May 6. Only three of the five Trust members — WL Srinivasan, SV Giri and RJ Ratnakar _ attendedunday’s meeting as Indulal Shah and justice Bhagavati could not make it.ANANTAPUR: The flow of devotees visiting the Maha Samadhi of Sri Satya Sai Baba remains unabated. Devotees, chanting Baba namam, were seen standing in long and serpentine queues well before the commencement of the darshan in the morning and in the evening, waiting for their turn to pay respects to the Baba at his Maha Samadhi.Devotees are allowed to offer prayers at the samadhi from 8 to 11 in the morning and from 4 to 8 in the evening.

In the Sai Kulwant Hall, where the samadhi is situated, students of Sai educational institutions and devotees sing bhajans eulogising the Baba while the daily activities are conducted at Prasanthi Nilayam as usual. With the steady increase in the number of devotees, the hotels and shops are buzzing with people again after a lull of four weeks.Meanwhile, Puttaparthi MLA Palle Raghunatha Reddy and leaders Adinarayna Reddy, Chandrasekhar and others appealed to the government to create a new district with Puttaparthi as its headquarters as a token of gratitude to Baba who initiated a Rs 400-crore water supply scheme benefiting people in 750 villages in the drought-prone district.

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