Tuesday, October 22, 2013


From 12th October`2013 to 14th October`2013, the Sai Baba Sansthan Trust`Shirdi celebrated Sai Baba's 95th Punyatithi Festival. To ensure that everybody gets an opportunity for darshan, the VIP darshan/Arati darshan passes, Sai Satyavrata Pooja and the Abhishek Pooja tickets were all stopped for these 3 days.

The Main Gate of the Shrine was converted into the famous Pandharpur Temple, with a 70 Foot Statue of Lord Viththal made by the Dwarakamai Mandal, standing on the top. The entire Temple & the premises was decorated by flowers which were offered by a devotee form Delhi.

With liberal donations from Sai Devotees, the Sai Prasadalaya which was open from 10.00 am to 10.00 pm, carried out free Annadaan (Meal Service) for all devotees for all the 3 days. And about 1,50,000 devotees took advantage of this free meal service at the Prasadalaya, while an estimated 2 lakh devotees received the free Laddu prasad while standing in the Darshan Queue.

The Shirdi Sansthan Trust received donations worth Rs 3.44 crore, including cash and jewellery, in 3 days. Break-up: of Rs 3,44,49,000/- s.3 Crore - Total collection of cash, gold and silver articles. Rs.44,49,000/ - By the sale of various items at the temple counters & accommodation bookings etc.

During the 3 days, a 756 Grams Golden Crown worth Rs.20,89,584/-,
a 2.5 kg Silver Abhishek Patra (water pot),
and a 32 kg Silver Mini Temple with 2 Sitting Platforms worth Rs.16 lakh were offered.

However, as compared to the donations received in the same period last year, this year's collections are less by Rs 1.57 crore because even though over 2 lakh devotees visited the temple during the 3-day festival, due to the 'Telangana' issue & the impact of cyclone 'Phailin' in Odisha / Andhra Pradesh, the number of visitors was less compared to last year's.

To be noted that even though the Crowds always decrease @ Shirdi during Pitru Paksha and Navratris, and adding to this the Telangana issue has had an huge impact on the crowds visiting Shirdi. But Despite that also, in the last 4 days of Navratris itself, the Sai Temple Donation Boxes collected Rs. 1 Crore 16 lakhs !

12th October,2013
05:00 am - Celebrations commenced with the procession of Sai Baba’s Photograph/Idol & Pothi. This was followed by the commencement of 'Sai Satcharitra Akhanda Parayan' at Dwarakamai which was open for the entire night on account of the Akhanda Parayana.

07:15 am - Sai Paadhya (holy lotus feet) Pujan at the Samadhi Shrine.
12:30 noon - Madhyan Arati.
04:00 pm - Kirtan by Shri.Manohar Bua Balakrishna Dixit.
06:15 pm - Dhoop Arati to Baba.
07:30 pm to 09:00 pm - “Sai Milan” program by Shri.Vishwanath Oza`Srirampur.
09:00 pm to 10.00 pm - Odissi dance by Dr.Madhumati Dixit`Pune.
Later both the artists were honored by the Sansthan trustees.
09:15 pm - Palanquin procession of Shri Sai started.
13th October,2013
In view of the main day the Samadhi Shrine remained open overnight for Darshan for all devotees and was marked by a special event - The Sai Sansthan Prasadalaya got the ISO-22000-2005 certification.
05:00 am - Culmination of the 'Sai Satcharitra Akhanda Parayan' at Dwarakamai followed by procession of Sai Baba’s Idol and Pothi.
09:00 am - Bhiksha Zoli program headed by the Shirdi Sai Sansthan trustees. The villagers offered them Jowar, Wheat, Rice and other grains.
05:00 pm - Procession and the 'Seemollanghana' program upto the Khandoba temple.
06:15 pm - Dhoop Arati.
07:30 pm – 10:00 pm - Sai Bhajans & Sai Upadesh by Shri.Kailash Harekrishnadas (from Nagpur).
09:15 pm - Rath Yatra of Sai Baba in which the entire village rung with the sonorous chants of Shri Sai.
14th October,2013
The day commenced with Rudrabhishek at Gurusthan, followed by Sai Paadhya (holy lotus feet) Pujan at the Samadhi Shrine.
10:00 am - Kirtan by Shri.Manoharbua Balakrishna Dixit.
12:00 noon - Gopalakala and Dahi-handi program.
12:15 noon - Madhyan Arati.
06:15 pm - Dhoop Arati.
07:30 pm to 10:00 pm - Kuchipudi dance by Shri.K.V.Satyanarayana`Yeluru.

Credits: Article By - Rohit Behal

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