At that time,right from a street urchin to the holy Lord,the whole of Tirumala was in a very deep sleep…All the otherwise busy streets of the holy temple town were wearing a vacant look..
Except an occasional sound here and there,the whole of the Tirumala hill shrine was filled with absolute silence..
And exactly during that dark hour…
Breaking all the silence…
This miracle occurred and occurred quite suddenly taking the entire hill shrine of Tirumala by surprise.
The huge Bronze bells,that were hanging in front of the principal deity of Lord Sri Venkatewsara in the holy Bangaru Vaakili (Sanctum Sanctorum) of the Tirumala Tirupati temple started ringing on their own.without anyone touching them,sending waves of heavy metal sound across the whole of the Tirumala hill shrine.
The security staff,the police,the pilgrims,the officials,the temple staff,the Archaks and the Purohits,who were shocked by the huge sound of the Bronze bells,woke up startled and came running to the main Temple.
They all stood there,outside the temple,watching in utter shock and disbelief, unable to know ”..how the huge bronze bells – hanging in the heavily guarded and fully locked up Bangaru Vaakili (Sanctum Sanctorum) – could ring on their own,without any one touching them..??..”
Shocking them further,the bells rang in that fashion for a few more minutes and later stopped on their own…It was a dream state for all those gathered there; an unbelievably true state.
Mysterious..Miraculous..And absolutely fantastic..
An Amazing And Rare Photograph Of Lord Sri Venkateswara With Sridevi And Bhudevi
The entire Temple staff,gathered there,knows pretty well that all the doors of the main temple,including those of the Sanctum Sanctorum,will be fully locked up from outside after the Ekanta Seva (Final pooja performed in the temple every night) and will only be opened,the next morning,for the Suprabhata Seva (First pooja offered to Lord Sri Venkateswara at 3 a. m everyday)…
So there’s no way any one could enter inside until,again,those doors are opened by the authorized Temple staff the next morning..Then how did the bells ring on their own and who is there inside the Sanctum Sanctorum except the holy Lord Sri Venkateswara Himself..??
Several questions were raised,several doubts were discussed and several more inferences were drawn,but none of those gathered there could come out with a logical explanation.
Finally,they all came to a conclusion that some pilgrim,by mistake,was locked up in side the main temple and he must have banged those Bronze bells just to draw the attention of the temple staff.
Well…That seems quite logical…At least in a human point of view..
But if that was the case why would we call it a miracle and where is the need for me to write about it,now,after thirty four years..????
Why did that miracle occur.. ??
And what was its significance…???
To know that,it’s important for us to go back in time and know a few things about a series of crisis ridden incidents that took place on the hill shrine of Tirumala just a few weeks prior to the occurrence of this miracle.
The holy temple town of Tirumala,in those days,was witnessing a never seen before water crisis that forced the TTD staff to impose sanctions on the daily water consumption there on the hill shrine…
As a result,the supply of water to all the employees’ quarters and also to the pilgrim’s cottages was restricted.. However,that could only regulate the water supply to a certain extent but could not offer any solid solution..
But in spite of that,the water levels in the Gogarbham reservoir and the Alwar tank on the hill shrine were drastically receding…A few more drinking water wells that were there on the Tirumala hill shrine too were drying out (The current Papa Naasanam reservoir was still under construction those days)
An Emergency Meeting Of The Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam Board
Lord Sri Venkateswara With Flower Decoration
Greatly disturbed by the acute water crisis,P V R K Prasad,the Executive Officer of the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam Board called for an emergency meeting of his executive staff to discuss about the various measures that need to be taken to combat the on going water crisis on the holy Tirumala hill…
He had a marathon discussion with all his water board engineers.
Those engineers not only pleaded complete helplessness but also warned their Executive Officer,saying “Sir,the tanks and reservoirs on the Tirumala hill shrine have very little water reserves now..They can only be served for a few more days and not any more…”
At length they discussed about various other options to withstand the water crisis for a few more days..Every one suggested..”..more sanctions be imposed on the consumption of water on the holy hill shrine..”
In those days,in addition to the twenty five thousand visitors per day,the holy Tirumala temple town had about six thousand population living there..Water sanctions were already being imposed to the maximum level and any further sanctions will only paralyze the human life there…
So no further sanctions…
Someone suggested to put a restriction on the number of daily pilgrims visiting the holy Tirumala hill shrine…
At that point,the Executive Officer said..”most of the pilgrims who visit Tirumala,plan their visit months in advance..It would be cruel on our part to stop them now..”
“..Secondly,there is no such legislation in TTD books to prevent any devotee of Lord Sri Venkateswara from visiting His holy hill shrine…Even otherwise,we are here to serve His devotees but not to put restrictions on their visits..”…
He concluded the meeting…
Problem came back to square one as the water crisis started deepening with every passing day.
The Crucial Meeting With A Noble Saint
As an ardent devotee of Lord Sri Venkateswara and as the official head of the holy Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam Board,the Executive Officer PVRK Prasad decided to find a solution to the water crisis on his own…
He has great faith in the holy scriptures of the Vedas and Upanishads and also knows pretty well that they can offer a definite solution to every human problem..
“But who is the competent person to offer me guidance on the Vedas and Upanishads and who will now give proper direction to the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam board on this aspect..???..” …
That was the million dollar question tormenting PVRK Prasad’s mind at that moment..
After due consultations with eminent personalities in the field of spirituality, PVRK Prasad has finally decided to seek guidance from Sri.Uppuluri Ganapati Sastry,a holy personality and an authentic authority on all the topics related to Vedas, Dharmas,Dharma Sastras and Upanishads.
Sri.Uppuluri Ganapati Sastry was a saintly 82-year old man and was an adviser, at that time,to the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam Board..Sri Satsry has spent forty eight years of his life time in learning Vedas and Upanishads..
Sri.Uppuluri Ganapathi Sastri
He has followers and disciples all over the world who very reverentially consider Sri.Sastry the reincarnation of Hindu Goddess Saraswati.
Apart from attaining complete mastery over the Vedas,Sri Sastry had also attained greater command over the Vedangas (Sub Branches of Vedas) namely Vyakarana, Tarka, Meemansa, Nyaya, Nirukta and a few other branches of Vedas…
By far he is the only Indian spiritual master empowered with so much of authority on the Vedas,Upanishads and all the other Dharma sastras…He was also the recipient of the prestigious Padma Vibhushan award presented by the honorable government of India..
PVRK Prasad met Sri.Uppuluri Ganapati Sastry at his Secunderabad residence and explained him in detail about the water crisis in Tirumala. .After carefully listening to all the woes narrated by Prasad, Sri Sastry smiled and said..
“Dear Prasad,without keeping it’s solution ready God will never give us a problem..We only need to adopt that wisdom to identify that solution.. Indeed there’s a solution,to every human problem,found in the Vedas and in fact people in olden days depended entirely on the Vedas and Vedic rituals for their problems.. ”
“..With utmost reverence and with complete faith in those holy Vedas they have followed all the scriptures laid down by them and found solutions to many of their problems.”..
PVRK Prasad was noting down all the points…
Sri Uppuluri Ganapati Sastry continued..
“Even during famine and acute water crisis,people in olden times have performed Varuna (God of Rain) Japam and enjoyed the benefits of rain…But in these modern days of sin filled world,Prasad,who has belief in Vedas and who will perform Varuna Japam,that too,with so much of discipline and faith required to perform it..??..”
“..Dear Prasad,if you are ready to do that,with all the spiritual discipline required,then I am here to guide you and give you the Rithviks (Brahmins or the officiating acharyas who perform holy religious activities on behalf of their spiritual master) who can perform the holy Varuna Japam in Tirumala…When it has given positive results those days why not now..??..”
Commencement Of The Holy Varuna Japam
The Divine Lord Sri Venkateswara Of Tirumala Tirupati
After carefully noting down every point mentioned by Sri Sastry, PVRK Prasad has decided to immediately perform the Vauna Japam (A divine and holy ritual performed to appease the Rain God of Varuna) in Tirumala,in accordance with the scriptures laid down in the Vedas…
He was determined,come what may, to follow all the holy instructions given by Sri.Satry..PVRK Prasad finally took blessings from the holy noble saint and left for Tirumala.
Later things followed in quick succession.
In view of his old age,Sri.Uppuluri Ganapati Sastry excused himself from personal attendance but he however promised to offer all the necessary help to Prasad to successfully complete the Varuna Japam..
Later Sri Sastry identified a few Rithviks and instructed them to go to Tirumala to perform the holy Varuna Japam.
After doing all the astrological calculations, PVRK Prasad decided to conduct the Varuna Japam on 1, November,1979…
But unfortunately the Rithviks,who were to conduct the Varuna Japam,could not come on time to Tirumala..
And as a result..
The Varuna Japam was indefinitely postponed
A couple of days have passed…
In the mean time the water crisis,on the holy Tirumala hill,deepened further..
Pleading total helplessness,the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam board engineers informed PVRK Prasad, “Sir…it will be impossible for us to supply water to the pilgrims for more than a week now ..”…”And if that happens sir..”,they warned…
“The holy temple town of Tirumala Tirupati has to be indefinitely closed down..”
And in such case of an indefinite closure then PVRK Prasad,as the official head of the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam board,will go down in the history of TTD as it’s most unpopular Executive Officer…
With a blazing Sun rocking the holy temple town of Tirumala and with no signs of any clouds anywhere nearby,PVRK Prasad was a disturbed man..
“What to do..??”..
Several questions were battling in his mind..
Without wasting any further time,he immediately called every member of his executive staff for an emergency meeting…His message to all of them was very loud and clear..
“..I want the Varuna Japam to be performed at the earliest..”…
The firmness in their boss’s voice conveyed his mind to his staff..Finally,they discussed about a few more problems and a few more hurdles.
However,PVRK Prasad made his stand very clear to them and told them “..come what may,we have to perform the Varuna Japam on the 8th of this month (November,1979)..”
Later he also personally spoke to all the Rithviks,over the phone,and briefed them about the grave situation on the holy Tirumala hills…
Finally,after every member of his staff left his chambers,a lonely PVRK Prasad stood up in his place and silently offered his prayers to Lord Sri Venkateswara..
“..Swamy Sri Venkateswara,as Your humble servant I have always done my best for You and for Your devotees..Then why these hurdles for me and what is this ordeal..??..I now need Your guidance and approval immediately..Please offer..”
Will the Lord Sri Venkateswara offer His approval..?? If so how..??
Kalyana Venkateswara Swamy
Although everyone swung into an immediate action there were still many doubts in everyone’s mind there..
The date of 8th,November too was fast approaching..An anxiety filled PVRK Prasad was eagerly waiting for an appropriate approval from the holy Lord Sri Venkateswara..
And it was then…
During that thick dark hour on the mid night of 7th, November, 1979…
Just a few hours before the commencement of the holy Varuna Japam..
The heavy Bronze bells,hanging in front of the principle deity of Lord Sri Venkateswara,started ringing on their own..
Thus signalling the holy Lord Sri Venkateswara’s much awaited permission and HIS most wanted approval for the Varuna Japam..
That was an amazingly mind blowing miracle of Lord Sri Venkateswara very difficult for the humanity to understand..
PVRK Prasad was speechless..
Later,for three full days,amidst chanting of the Vedic hymns,the holy Varuna Japam was performed strictly according to the Vedas and strictly according to the instructions given by the noble Sri Uppuluri Ganapati Sastry..
After that,once all the rituals of the Varuna Japam were completed on the third and final day,it was supposed to rain immediately..
But there were still no signs of any rain from any corner..
After the final rituals,carrying the Ceremonial Deities in their hands,all the Rithviks were returning to the main temple..
PVRK Prasad,the special invitees,the engineers,the board officials,the visitors, the pilgrims,the security staff,members from the press were also silently following them..
There was an utter disappointment in everyone’s face..
“Except tear drops in our eyes,there’s not a drop of rain anywhere nearby..” someone from the press commented..
And then it happened..
Perhaps the biggest miracle…
All of them were very silently walking back towards the main temple and were still hundred paces away from the actual destination..
Before they could realize and before they could run for their shelter..
Making a huge thunderous noise…
The skies opened up…
And it started raining heavily..Very heavily indeed..
An unbelievable sight… Seen to be believed..
None of them was carrying an umbrella and before they could all run into the main temple for shelter,they were fully drenched in rain..
Joy.. Ecstasy.. Surprise.. Disbelief..
Holy Lord Of Tirumala Tirupati
It’s very difficult to describe the mood there..
And in that glorious and spectacular fashion..
That heavy rain watered the whole of Tirumala hill shrine for many hours..
When PVRK Prasad was monitoring the overall situation in his office chambers, a fully excited TTD water works engineer came running into his chambers and informed Prasad…
“Sir,the Gogarbham reservoir is over flowing..”
>An emotionally ecstatic P V R K Prasad,with his eyes filled with tears of devotion,immediately got up from his chair and turned towards the main temple of Tirumala and offered his thanks,in an all joyous silence,to Lord Sri Venkateswara..
>After that amazing miracle of ringing bells that night,the doors of the main temple were opened up for the Suprabtham Seva the next morning (8th, November, 1979)..Without leaving an inch,the holy temple staff went around searching every nook and corner of the Sanctum Sanctorum,but to their utter shock and disbelief,they did not find anything suspicious there except the ever smiling principal deity of the holy Lord Sri Venkateswara.
>Tirupati,Renigunta,Sri Kalahasti,Railway Koduru are a few other important places very close to Tirumala…However,none of these places reported any rain fall at that time when it was heavily pouring down in Tirumala.. A true miracle again.
>Sri.PVRK Prasad was an honest IAS officer and was also a crucial Adviser to the former Indian Prime Minister P V Narasimha Rao..He was responsible for many crucial decisions taken by the honorable prime minister those days. Prasad was,in a way,responsible for many of the economic reforms that later changed the overall financial scenario in India..At the age of 73 today PVRK Prasad is leading a saintly life in Hyderabad..
>Sadly,there is little information available on the web about the great Indian noble saint Sri.Uppuluri Ganapati Sastry…If any one of you have any info about this great Indian, please mail me the details..
I had the honor of meeting this noble saint,once,personally in 1991 and was fortunate enough to be blessed by him..HONOR