EARLY THAT EVENING, (Jan. 26, 1953) at about five o’clock, the largest mass darshan program during the three months of Baba’s Fiery Free Life took place at Ram Kothi (the name of the fairgrounds) in Eluru. A giant multitude of an estimated sixty thousand people had assembled. There was a sea of heads as far as the eye could see. Men and women formed into separate lines as the police tried to keep the crowd under control. Baba worked like a machine distributing prasad with both hands continuously until about seven-thirty. Although there was an enormous crowd, the queues proceeded peacefully, and there were no disturbances.
Raisaheb Ramashankar of Hamirpur had been positioned next to Baba throughout the program. His job was to collect the various offerings (fruit, coconuts, sweets, flowers and gifts) brought by devotees before they went to Baba for prasad. But by the end of the day he was not to be seen. He was completely surrounded and submerged by the huge mound of offerings. Ramashankar was so overpowered by the day’s experience that he did not know who he was anymore and had to be escorted away. Baba comforted him, but he was out of his senses with love, and it was a month before Ramashankar returned to normal.
On his return to Subba Rao’s home after the darshan, Baba remarked, “The time has come when the Ocean of Love has to flood the rivers which have gone spiritually dry! When you see me giving darshan and prasad to thousands of people, it is neither mechanical nor meaningless. These are the means by which my love flows to humanity.”
Throughout the Fiery Free Life darshan tour, Baba had complained about body aches and sleeplessness. Since arriving in Tadepalligudem, he had not been able to sleep well at night, as he had a cold as well as a sore throat.
Lord Meher, 1st. ed., Bhau Kalchuri, Vol. 11, p. 4062.