Unique Features of The Wari :

1) In the WARI participant WARKARIS are undaunted by natural impediments (rain or shine, winds and darkness) and hardships of the walk. This is because of their faith and conviction that they would be able to meet their Lord (Vitthal) since MAULI is by their side, caring and guiding them through this pilgrimage. While on the WARI some faithfuls do not consume even a drop of water during the day.

2) For generations, the horses leading the PALKHI are rendered in service by SHITOLE SARKAR.They travel for eleven days on foot from Ankli near Belgaum (Karnataka) on Jestha Ekadashi to reach Alandi.

3) Besides tradition, faith guides the horses’ procession from Ankli to Alandi. As the horses traverse across villages in Karnataka and Maharashtra to reach Alandi, it carries along with it the respects and regards of hundreds of thousands of people (who might not be able to make it to the WARI) to be entrusted to MAULI who would convey the same to Lord Vitthal when they meet at PANDHARPUR where the WARI completes its journey.

4) During its entire course, there are four community ablutions of the PADUKAs – twice on the banks of the river NEERA on the way to and from Pandharpur and twice on the banks of the Chandrabhaga in Pandharpur. The later are conducted on Aashaadhi Ekadashi day and the following full moon day.

5) Twice during the sojourn are AARTIs performed enroute in the morning – once at THORLYA PADUKA (place near Charholi) and once in Pune at the Shinde Chhatri (memorial of Shri Mahadaji Shinde).

6) For the MAULI temple and its management, the Shinde Sarkar had bestowed the villages of Alandi and Nanaj as INAAM (unconditional grants in perpetuity). Shri Guru Haibat Baba too was a SARDAR (chieftan / officer) in service of the SHINDEs. The main entrance, the NAGARKHANA (place to house and maintain the huge the musical instruments serving the temple) and the VEENA MANDAP (where the AKHANDA VEENA – incessant strumming of the VEENA is in progress) were built with the munificence of the SHINDEs. To commemorate the same, the morning AARTI is performed at Shinde Chhatri near Pune.

7) Since the year 1831, the WARI SOHALA has received patronage from the SHITOLE SARKAR. The custom has continued to this day. In honour thereof, MAULI’s PADUKA rest in the tent of the SHITOLE SARKAR every night during the WARI to Pandharpur.

8) At Wakhari, the PADUKA are dismounted from the chariot and worn around the SHITOLE SARKAR’s neck as a mark of respect and gratitude for their service to the WARI.

Page 1Page 2Page 2APage 3