“Kalam said he was a changed man after coming to Prasanthi Nilayam…”

December 27, 2002 (Friday)


Swami came to Ganesh portico at around 4.00 pm.

Swami : What are boys doing?

Teacher : Swami, they are practising in the grounds for the Sports Meet. Only two weeks are left.

Swami : It will start in the second week of the next month. Tomorrow in Delhi, Kalam (President of India) is going to speak about the Sathya Sai Institute. He will be giving a report about the work done by the Ph.D. boys. 

(Then, Swami called the Vice-Chancellor, Sri S.V. Giri, to the portico. To the Vice-Chancellor) Where is Kalam speaking tomorrow?

V. C. : Tomorrow the President is scheduled to speak at 11.30 am in the Vigyan Bhavan on the occasion of the Golden Jubilee Celebrations of the U.G.C. (University Grants Commission).

Swami : He is telling something about our Ph.D. work also.

V. C. : Yes, Swami. He is going to mention about the research on Fluoride and Spectroscopy. Among all the Universities, he liked the atmosphere of our University very much.

Swami : He liked the atmosphere; he liked Swami and everything here. Yesterday, the Prime Minister (Sri Atal Bihari Vajpayee), the Deputy Prime Minister (Sri Lal Krishna Advani), Delhi Governor and Kalam – all of them sat together and spoke about our University and Swami for one and half hours. They said that ours is a high-tech College. Vajpayee told that the Ideal Master is there. But who is Ideal Master here?

Teachers : (In chorus) Swami, You only.

V. C. : Swami, Kalam said that he was a changed man after he came to Parthi.

Swami : Kalam said, “I am a changed man.”

Teacher : Swami, is he coming for the Sports Meet?

Swami : I did not tell him to come. I did not permit him. 

Teacher : Swami, once Kalam said, “Sai Baba Ko Abdul Kalam Ka Salaam” (Salutations to Sai Baba from Abdul Kalam).

President of India, Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam with Sri Sathya Sai - November 22,2002
Swami : Yes, I remember. In this month’s issue of the Sanathana Sarathi the Convocation procession and Kalam’s speech was published. (To the Vice-Chancellor) Did you see it?

V. C. : Yes, Swami.

Swami : What are boys doing in the ground?

Teacher : Swami, they are practicing bike stunts. Swami it would be nice if You come and see them doing the stunts. It will be encouraging for them.

Swami : I will not come on any other day except on that day. Till now I have travelled in Jatka, Tonga and Tram (different modes of transportation in the earlier days). But never have I travelled on a motorcycle. I sat even on a bicycle. But I never rode it, I only sat on the back.

Teacher : In your school days, Swami?

Swami : Yes. When the place around Karnatanagepalli used to be submerged in water, I had to come around like that.

Teacher : Swami travelled in cars too.

Swami : I have driven all the cars except the BMW. (Then Swami mentioned the names of few cars and said that they were available at very less price in those days.) 
Saying so, Swami started walking towards the interview room at 4.35 pm.


Source: Students with Sai: Conversations (2001-2004)

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