Sri Sai Guru Charitra is a biography on the life of Sai Baba of Shirdi, written by Sant Kavi Das Ganu Maharaj. Sant Kavi Das Ganu wrote three books on different saints, in which he devoted four chapters to Sai Baba. These books are called 'Bhakta Leelamrita', 'Bhakti Saramrita' and 'Sant Kathamrita'. The four chapters have been combined into one book, under the title of "Shri Sai Gurucharitra", and were translated into English in 1949.
Stories About Dasganu Maharaj Translated from the book Sai Sarovar
One day late at night Kaana Bhil came to Gangaram Patel’s home and started asking, “Patel! Who is that saint in the temple?”
Patel replied, “Kindly do not touch him, he is a God-man, a saintly personality”.
Kanha said, “Patel, this is your innocence, he is the police, Come with me, I will show his reality to you”.
Both reached the temple at midnight, where Dasganu Maharaj was sleeping. On the gunpoint Kaana woke up Dasganu. Seeing Kaana at that late hour, he was frightened to the core and started perspiring profusely.
Kaana shouted and asked him, “O fake saint, are you a police from Jamkheda or not? Is not your name Dattatreya Sahastrabuddhe? Your badge number is seven hundred and twenty-seven (727). Tell me if this is a truth or not”.
All this made Dasganu think that death is nearing him and Yamraaj would not spare him. His plight will be the same as Manappa and Naagappa (Refer to previous post of the series).
In a trembling tone, Dasganu said, “I have nothing to do with the police. I am a resident of Pandav Wadi of Satara. I had gone on pilgrimage to Jamkheda to meet Samarth Swami Ramdas. On returning I learned that the cholera epidemic has broken out in Pandav Wadi. So the police are not allowing anyone to enter the village”.
I noticed this flowing river and the temple of Ram is in the middle of the mountains. There is a lot of solitude here and it is a sacred spot. I felt this is a good place to sing the glory of God. So I stayed back here. Still, if you want to kill me, it is your wish. Just let me keep my head at the feet of God and you are free to use your weapon on me.
Then and there, Dasganu vowed mentally to God Ram, “I have served You here with all my heart, I bow at Your feet and promise you that if I get out of here safely, I will leave this job of a policeman”.
Firmly Dasganu held feet of the idol of Ram and put his head on the earth and said, “Blow your weapon now”. He started chanting “Hey Ram Hey Ram” and fell unconscious. Seeing this unexpected turn in the situation, Kaana Bhil mistook it as Dasganu took Samadhi and he threw away the weapon in his hand. He said to Patel, “I am leaving for Pandav Wadi now to inquire about this saint. You make sure this maharaj stays here until I return”.
After regaining consciousness, Dasganu sent an encrypted message to his superiors about the danger that he surpassed and requested them to come and wash off his doubt about him among the villagers of Loni.
A sub-inspector named Maruti Pandharinath along with other officers came from Ahmednagar. They all faked to surround the temple and caught hold of Dasganu. They abused him and started beating him. While doing so, they said, “You are from the gang of Kaana Bhil. He has kept you here to get all the information about us”. Saying this they handcuffed Dasganu and took him around the village.
The villagers interfered in the matter. They asked Dasganu to declare in writing in which he stated, “I am a resident of Pandav Wadi. Due to the rise of cholera I came to Loni village and made the temple my habitat. I have no connection with Kaana Bhil or his goons nor haven’t seen any of them any day”. The sub-inspector and Talati Antaji signed on the paper and taking the fake declaration they left the village.
While starting the sub-inspector said to Gangaram Patel, “We are thoroughly inquiring the whereabouts of this maharaj. So make sure he doesn’t leave the village”. This incident cleared the doubt about Dasganu from the villager’s minds of him being a police officer. Kaana Bhil also got the updated information and he started believing that Dasganu is a common man turned into a saint due to circumstances. To celebrate the occasion, Gangaram threw a party in an open field of the village and sent an invitation to Dasganu.
Dasganu replied humbly, “Such parties will be serving non-vegetarian food and these foods are forbidden for a saint like me. Better bring a few stacks of sugarcane, it will be enough for me”. Dasganu wanted to make use of this opportunity to get hold of Kaana Bhil and thus he again sent an encrypted message to one of his superiors in Ahmednagar. While the party was going on, the police came and surrounded the village. But Kaana Bhil was a brutal fellow. He put the fences of the ground on fire, hid behind a hill and did gunfire in which four policemen were killed. Thus he succeeded one more time to escape.
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