The Varkari diaries

Alandi as well as Dehu temples are a must-visit pilgrimage spot for Vitthal devotees. While Alandi boasts of the Samadhi of Sant Dnyaneshwar, a famous saint in Maharashtra, Dehu is famed as the birth place of the poet saint Tukaram. Innumerable devotees from all around Pune will arrive here on Ashadi Ekadashi, which falls on June 30 this year to the chantof Dnyanoba Mauli Tukaram as they worship both the temples.

Devotees singing abhangas. Pics/ Yogesh Pawar

Alandi is 20 km from the city, off the Pune-Nashik Road. Popularly known as Devachi Alandi (God’s place), it is situated on the banks of the river Indrayani. The Samadhi temple is the place to head to.

Dehu temple

The Dehu temple is almost 30 km from the city. Professor Sadananda More, who is an educationalist and a priest at the temple pointed out that people who cannot travel all the way to Pandharpur come to Dehu or Alandi. Both the temples will have special kirtans (prayers) on this Saturday.

Warkaris dancing in front of the Dehu temple

The Alandi temple was built in 1570 while the Dehu temple is believed to have been built during the 18th century. The place in which Tukaram attained Moksha (salvation) is near Dehu and there is also a rock which is famous as it is believed that Tukaram stood on it for 13-days during his fast. You can also visit the garden dedicated to his wife.

Devotees dancing

Transport is easy thanks to a number of state transport buses from Pune. There are dharmashalas for a comfortable stay, but prior booking is necessary. Dehu and Alandi, from where the palkhis had originally begun their journey to Pandharpur, will once again be thronged by pilgrims.

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