Hundreds honour Sai Baba in candle-lit march in Durban

2011-04-27 00:00

HUNDREDS of devotees in the greater Durban area took part in a candlelight street vigil and prayer to pay their last respects to their late spiritual master Sathya Sai Baba last night before his funeral this morning in his hometown of Puttaparthi, India.

The vigil was organised by the Hillside Sai Centre and Bluff Bhajan Group. People of other faiths joined in lighting candles at the Merebank Parasathi Temple and walking almost a kilometre singing bhajans and marching through the streets of Merebank.

Paul Naidoo, chairperson of the Hillside Sai Centre, said: “We are welcoming people of all faiths and backgrounds to join us in this time of such a great loss and to make others aware that we are here to honour Baba before his funeral on Wednesday. It is our effort to reinforce Baba’s universal teachings of ‘Serve all and love all’ at the point when the world is crying out for peace and love among all its peoples.”

Some devotees, overcome with emotion, sobbed as they walked.

Staunch devotee Jane Pillay said: “Baba is not just recognised for the structures he built, like hospitals, schools for the poor and other amenities, but Baba is an ‘avatara’ (incarnation). During [today’s] funeral ceremony devotees will congregate at the various Sai centres to commemorate the passing of Baba,” said Naidoo.

The chairperson of the Sai Sudha Centre in Chatsworth, Dhunpal Naidoo, who is in India spoke to this reporter from Sai Baba’s home town minutes before the vigil.

He expressed his amazement at the large crowds and the electrifying atmosphere that forced organisers to allow the viewing of Sai Baba’s body to be extended by six hours.

“I am extremely overwhelmed and we are being well treated by local devotees,” Naidoo said.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.