Mhalsapati, who had the benefit of forty to fifty unbroken years with Sai Baba, may be considered among the foremost of his devotees.
He was the first to worship Baba, the first to greet him on his arrival in Shirdi and to address him as "Sai" (Saint). Only Mhalsapati and one other (Tatya Kote Patil) were allowed to stay with Baba in the mosque at night.
In 1886 Mhalsapati was entrusted with a very important responsibility that was literally a matter of life and death, and which had far-reaching implications.
Baba, who had been suffering from breathing difficulties, told him that he was "going to Allah", and that Mhalsapati should look after his body for three days. "If I do not return," said Baba, "then get it buried near the neem tree."