Sunday, July 19, 2009

Original Saibaba Padukas at Ashok Mhalsapathi's House

This is the photograph taken at Sri.Ashok Mhalsapathi's (Grand son of Sri.Mhalsapathi) House in Shirdi. This Paduka of Shirdi Saibaba was given to Sri.Mhalsapathi by Sri Saibaba himself.

The original version of the story about Saibaba Paduka can be seen in Sai Satcharitha Chapter 5 which is as below:

The Story of Padukas (foot-prints) under the Neem Tree
A devotee of Akkalkot Maharaj by name Bhai Krishnaji Alibagkar worshipped the photo of Akkalkot Maharaj. He once thought of going to Akkalkot (Sholapur District), taking the darshana of the Padukas (foot-prints) of the Maharaj and offering his sincere worship there; but before he could go there, he got a vision in his dream. Akkalkot Maharaj appeared in the vision and said to him - "Now Shirdi is my resting place, go there and offer your Worship." So Bhai changed his plan and came to Shirdi, worshipped Baba, stayed there for six months and was happy. As a reminiscence of this vision etc., he prepared the Padukas and installed them on an auspicious day of Shravan, Shaka 1834 (1912 A.D.) under the Neem tree with due ceremonies and formalities, conducted by Dada Kelkar and Upasani. One Dixit Brahmin was appointed for worship, and the management was entrusted to devotee Sagun.

Complete Version of this Story
Mr. B.V. Deo, Retired Mamalatdar of Thana, and a great devotee of Sai Baba, made enquired about this matter with Sagun Meru Naik and Govind Kamlakar Dixit and has published a full version of the Padukas in Sai Leela Vol. 11, No. 1, page 25. It runs as follows:
In 1834 Shaka (1912 A.D.) one Doctor Ramarao Kothare of Bombay came to Shirdi for Baba’s darshana. His compounder; and his friend, Bhai Krishnaji Alibagkar, accompanied him. The compounder and Bhai became intimate with Sagun Meru Naik and G.K. Dixit.
While discussing things, these persons thought that there must be some memorial of the fact of Sai Baba’s first coming to Shirdi and sitting under the holy Neem tree. They thought of installing Baba’s Padukas there and were going to make them of some rough stones. Then Bhai’s friend, the compounder, suggested that if this matter be made known to his master, Dr. Ramarao Kothare, who would prepare nice Padukas for this purpose. All liked the proposal and Dr. Kothare was informed of it. He came to Shirdi and drew a plan of the Padukas. He went to Upasani Maharaj in Khandoba’s temple, and showed him his plan. The latter made many improvements, drew lotuses, flowers, conch, disc, man etc., and suggested that the following SHLOKA (verse) regarding Neem tree’s great ness and Baba’s Yogi powers be inscribed. The verse was as follows:

"Sada Nimbarvrikshasya mooladhiwasat,Sudhasravinam tiktamapi-apriyam tam,Tarum Kalpavrikshadhikam sadhayantamNamameeshwaram Sadgurum Sai Natham"

Sai Devotees are requested to visit Sri.Ashok Mhalsapathi's house when they visit Shirdi and have darshan of Saibaba Padukas. The address of Sri.Ashok Mhalsapathi's house is as mentioned below:

Sri.Ashok Martand Nagare (Grandson of Bhakta Mhalsapathi)
Near Dwarakamai Masjid
Phone: 02423-255613,258924
Mobile: +91 94227 28094

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