After the morning interview, when all the devotees had come out of the interview room, Swami went back inside the interview room and gave a cushion mat and told a person to give it to the devotee who had left it inside after the interview. Swami came to the first block.
Swami : (To a Research Scholar) Did you take the test?
R. S. : Swami, I took the test day before yesterday.
Swami : What questions did the Vice-Chancellor ask?
R. S. : Swami, he asked questions on research.
Swami : Did you answer well?
R. S. : Your grace, Swami.
Swami : Is there any progress (in research)?
R. S. : Swami knows. (One of the Primary School students was showing a photo for Swami’s autograph.)
Swami : Dunnapotha! Sit down. Do you know, what is Dunnapotha?
Student : Swami, buffalo.
Swami : Not buffalo, he-buffalo! (To the Research Scholars) He has three idlis for breakfast. (To another student) How many idlis did you have?
Student : Three, Swami.
Swami : How many vadas?
Student : Swami, two.
Swami : (To the Research Scholars) Primary School children eat nicely. (To an Institute student) What did you have for tiffin? (Student could not remember.) If you cannot remember this much, how will you do research on Mahabharata? For lunch?
Student : Swami, rice, Sambar…
Swami : I know, brinjal Sambar. Brinjal was not boiled fully. How is the taste of food?
Student : Swami, good.
Swami : For you everything is good. Bheema Pakam (Bheema’s cooking). (Seeing a black mole on one of the Primary School student’s chin) It is there since birth. (Pointing to Mr. Robert, Member, Sri Sathya Sai Central Council of U.S.A., to the students) He is a good man. He is coming here for the past 30 years, same devotion. All of you have come here recently. (To the devotee) How is your wife?
Mr. Robert : Fine, Swami.
Swami : She is also good. He has two daughters.
Mr. Robert : Now they also have children.
Swami : (To a student) His wife is working in the International Book Centre (Sathya Sai Book Centre). (To Mr. Robert) Brother had heart operation, by-pass, I know. Are you happy? (He nodded in affirmation.) How much? (Swami stretched His hands to show the size.)
Mr. Robert : This much, Swami.
Mr. Robert stretched his hands fully to express his happiness. Everyone in the hall laughed with Swami. Swami went to the Ganesh Portico. In the Ganesh Portico…
Swami : (To all the students smilingly) I was talking with Dunnapotha inside and now I talk with the outside Dunnapothas. (To Prof. Anil Kumar) You are the first Dunnapotha! You are sitting in the front. (Swami and Prof. Anil Kumar conversed about the unrest in Bangalore due to the kidnapping of film actor Raj Kumar. To the students) Who wants to join Veerappan gang? (Commonly known as Veerappan or Sandalwood Veerappan, he was an Indian bandit (died in 2004) who was active for years in scrub and forest lands covering about 6,000 sq. km in the states of Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu.) (No one answered.) Tyaja Durjana Samsargam, Bhaja Sadhu Samaagamam, Kuru Punyam Ahoratram, Smara Nitya Anityatam (Leave bad company, join the assembly of the virtuous, always do good deeds, always discriminate the permanent one from the impermanent).
(Swami conversed with Prof. Anil Kumar about the killings of the pilgrims to the holy shrine of Amarnath and the people from Bihar in Jammu and Kashmir. To the students) Who is from Bihar? (Few students lifted their hands. Swami said humourously to Prof. Anil Kumar) Be careful with them! (After a pause) Good and bad are everywhere. (About a person’s pronunciation) He tells Hostel as ‘hastel’. Gokak (Prof. V. K. Gokak, first Vice-Chancellor of Swami’s University) got people from Hyderabad and trained them in English. (Swami enquired with the Institute Warden, Dr. Siva Sankara Sai, about the lunch at the Hostel.) You gave only brinjal and Rasam. (To a School student) What did you have for lunch? (The student listed out a variety of items as Thursday special. To the Institute Warden) See, so many items. But even in the Rasam that you give, there is nothing.
Warden : Swami, we are giving special food during dinner tonight.
Swami : (Pointing to a student, to Prof. Anil Kumar) He is a good boy… (After a pause) For Me, all are good. (The student told Swami about the problem with his stomach. Swami consoled the student and told him that it will become all right. To Prof. Anil Kumar) In Punjab, he eats Parotha. But here he has to eat rice and Sambar. Only one month is over, not yet got adjusted. Emi Samacharam? (What news?)
Prof. A. K. : Swami, last Tuesday two students put up a nice programme in the morning prayer session. Tabla and Mrindangam.
Swami : Sama! (‘Sama’ programme is a short presentation on various aspects of music presented by the students during the prayer session at the Institute. This is an initiative by the students of the Institute’s Music Group and is coordinated by them.) By practicing, one can play well. (Swami enquired from the Warden, Dr. Siva Sankara Sai, about students who are sick and have not written the exams. Then, He mentioned to Prof. Anil Kumar) All of you think that I am in Poornachandra (Swami’s residence) and I do not know anything, but I know everything.
Prof. Anil Kumar also mentioned to Swami that in a satellite TV channel, there was a programme on Swami every morning during Darshan time. Thereafter, Swami went back to the interview room. Later, Swami came inside the Bhajan Hall few minutes before Bhajans.
Swami : (To a student) Why didn’t you write the exam day before yesterday?
Student : Fever, Swami. (Swami touched the forehead of the student and checked his fever. Then, He materialised Vibhuti for him.)