This page last updated:10 May 2011
Last Public Darshan of Sathya Sai Baba
Photograph of Swami granting His last public darshan on 20th March 2011.
Download PDF file of Swami giving pranaams
Obsequies of Sathya Sai Baba
You may watch a video of the last rites for Sathya Sai Baba, with State Honours. Narrative of day events given under the video, here.
2011-04-27 Last Rites with State Honours from Sri Sathya Sai Darshan on Vimeo.
Video of Obsequies
NDTV (India) has a broadcast Video of the Last Rites in Sai Kulwant Hall for Sathya Sai Baba. You may view this summary broadcast on the NDTV website (link opens in new window)
Update Evening 27 April
A narrative of Obsequies, all the events, and slideshow, is available here (Sathya Sai Books and Publications site; opens in a new window)
Online Coverage of Obsequies
A comprehensive slideshow of the Obsequies is available here (Slideshow with 47 pictures)
Obsequies for Sathya Sai Baba
The function commenced at 7AM with an aalaap bhajan by noted classical vocalist Pt. Jasraj, that was followed by an hour-long bhajan by students. A host of prayers representing various religions, that included Jewish, Christianity, Islam, Buddhism and Sikhism followed before a set of selected bhajans was rendered by students ... taking one and all to nostalgic happy days with their Beloved "Swami".
The final journey of Sathya Sai Baba had the full state honours as both Governor and Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh were present during the occasion. The gun salute was accorded and the police band played in homage as the final proceedings were on.
The final rites commenced with Sathya Sai Baba's nephew RJ Ratnakar, representing the family, performing the rites. A host of priests guided the entire ceremony that lasted for 45 minutes.
Sathya Sai Baba's body was then lowered in a specially made pit of 7 feet by 12 feet on the very podium that He used to adorn during His darshan sessions.
Scenes from Puttaparthi and Prashanti Nilayam
There were crowds inside the darshan hall; ladies in the Sai Kulwant Hall awaiting the last rites is shown below:
The Men's side of the Sai Kulwant Hall was a phalanx of white forms as far as the eye could see:
Sai Kulwant hall was filled for the event, which began with special alaapan bhajan, and then full one hour bhajan by students
Outside the darshan hall the queues and crowds were tremendous: here, you can see the crowd adjacent the Gopuram in the morning
Outside the darshan hall the devotees of Sathya Sai Baba waited with patience, love and understanding as they tried to enter and take part in ceremonies...
There were early morning queues to enter the ashram...
Pandals were set up for those who ished to watch outside; meanwhile, people queued to take entry into the ashram...
Ceremonies began with vedic prayers and chants; then came the full state honours to Sathya Sai Baba. The casket is draped with the flag of India.
Spiritual leaders from the Tibetan Buddhist, Sikh and Muslim religions all read prayers and led chants from different religions for the samadhi of Sathya Sai Baba
Ratnakar, nephew of Sathya Sai Baba, performed the last rites on behalf of the family.
A curtain was lowered for the private part of the rites, and the reposing of Sathya Sai Baba's body in the pit for the samadhi. Here, the curtains are raised after the private rites were completed.
Final prayers were chanted, and mangal arati was offered by the ten participating priests.
Samadhi of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba in Sai Kulwant Hall.
Scenes from Puttaparthi, 26 April 2010
Yesterday, there were crowds, crowds, crowds in Prashanthi Nilayam
Gives you an idea of the crowds in Prashanti Nilayam yesterday
The Sri Sathya Sai Trust is obviously well prepared. Marquees run all the way around the town to protect devotees from the summer sun. Huge television screens at strategic points carried views of Kulwant Hall and Swami's Perspex casket.
Volunteers handed out plastic sachets of water and there were also several food stations along the way. Police, contrary to their lathi-bearing image, were solicitous and gentle. All along the route, at traffic circles and under pavement trees, abandoned shoes and sandals lay in heaps where they had been abandoned by devotees anxious not to miss their final darshan.
Police and seva dals guided thousands of men women and children throughout the day. There were two queues, one each for men and women, but all led along the main road to the Ganesha Gate of Prasanthi Nilayam.
There were similar crowds throughout and around the entire town.
Motor vehicles are not being allowed into the town, so people had to walk the last two or three kilometres to the ashram.
Last night, the Muslims of Puttaparthi honoured Sri Sathya Sai Baba
Prime Minister takes final darshan of Sathya Sai Baba
Lying in State
Sathya Sai Baba's body is lying in state in Sai Kulwant Hall, at the Prashanti Nilayam. To view images and a slide show of the glass catafalque, click here
A white curtain has been placed behind the Perspex casket. As thousands solemnly file past, work is proceeding under the wooden platform that Swami used as a stage when He appeared before devotees. A marble crypt is to replace the stage where Sai Baba sat to give darshan to millions of devotees over the years.
On Wednesday, a Maha Samadhi yagna would be performed before the crypt is sealed for posterity.
Passing - Maha Samadhi - of Sai Baba
On morning of 24 April 2011, official advice has been given that Sathya Sai Baba is no longer in his physical form, and departed his body at 7.40am (Indian Time) 24th April 2011.
His body will lie in state at Sai Kalwant Hall for two days - Monday and Tuesday.
The passing of Sri Sathya Sai Baba is a momentous event for the tens of millions of His devotees around the world.
Sathya Sai Baba touched our lives individually and in the most beautiful and gentle manner, filling us with faith when we had doubts, with hope when we were distressed, with Divine love and joy when we were down with confusion or were perplexed. He showed us the path and the goal to a blessed life; He gave meaning and purpose to our lives. Being His devotees with whom He chose to entrust the future of His Divine Mission also carries responsibilities that we continue to serve Him with the same enthusiasm that we have served Him in the past
Futher information will be given on this website when it becomes available.
This is the announcement which was given here on the morning of 24 April 2011. It has since been removed. (It is still available here) We advise awaiting further official announcements from the Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust.
Updated Sunday, Apr 24, 2011 1115 Hrs. IST
Official Medical Bulletin by Dr. AN Safaya, Director, SSSIHMS, PG made at 1000 hrs. this morning.
Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba is no more with us physically. He left His earthly body on 24th April, 2011, at 0740 hrs. due to cardio-respiratory failure.
Bhagawan Baba's Body will lie in state at Sai Kulwant Hall for two days (Monday and Tuesday). Arrangements will be made for Darshan after 1800 hrs. today, at Sai Kulwant Hall.
We appeal to all not to rush to the hospital, but to remain calm and have Darshan in an orderly manner.
Grieving devotees may kindly take notice that Bhagawan had done such "feats", time and again, leaving His physical frame for the good cause of humanity, only to return to His physical frame, later. We appeal devotees to stay calm, focused in their prayers, pleading our Beloved Bhagawan to return to His physical frame, blessing humanity and His entire creation.
Let's stay focused with prayers on our lips, on this Easter Sunday!!!
Last Public Darshan of Sathya Sai Baba
The last photograph of Swami granting His last public darshan on 20th March 2011, one month before taking samadhi.