Strange Haldi Festival in Maharashtra (Post No.12,047)



Post No. 12,047

Date uploaded in London – –  26 May , 2023                  

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The Haldi festival, held at Pattan Kodoli, in the district of Kolhapur in Maharshtra is organised every year in October. It is a festival of the Shepherd Community.

The festival  is celebrated to commemorate the birth anniversary of Vitthal Birdev Maharaj, who is considered to be a reincarnation of Lord Vishnu.

Birdev is also the family deity of the Dhangar, a shepherd community that resides in Maharashtra, Karnataka, Goa and Andhra Pradesh. The annual fair and festival attract thousands of devotees, where the festive mood is set with people throwing haldi or turmeric powder over Sri Keloba Rajabau Waghmode, known as the ‘Baba’ who sits under a Banyan tree. The baba is considered as the messenger of god, and people seek his blessings for a healthy life. He’s revered for his ability to foretell his predictions about farming, rain and future conditions of the country which is helpful to the people of the community.

The most important ceremony of this fare is the predictions by Shree Kheloba Rajabhau Waghmode, from Anjungau, a village in Solhapur District. He gives predictions whenn he gets the divine sword from the temple priest.

 Sri Keloba Rajabau Waghmode, known as the ‘Baba’ of the devotees, walks 17 days from his village to reach Pattan Kodoli for the festival every year. Huge umbrellas are brought in to welcome the Baba to the temple, accompanied with a procession with drums and traditional music. As soon as he enters the temple, Baba attains a trance mode that makes him jump and dance that lasts for nearly 10 minutes. The Baba then goes ahead to foretell his predictions about farming, rain and future conditions in Kannada, his trance language, which is translated by the priest. He starts his journey back after the rituals gets over.

For a week people walk towards the village with accompanied folk musicians. They are joined by acrobats, vendors and farmers. They carry a special type of umbrella.  which they spin and dance.. Baba’s predictions are like the predictions in Tamil Panchangs (almanacs). it also predicts about the weather, harvest, political situation, natural catastrphes that may happen in the new year.

Like Baba, Tamil village priests also get possesed and make preditions for the village; but in this Maharashtra village it is celebrated with a huge crowd.

Devotees offer the yellow powder to God in the village temple and take it back as Prasad. Since this area is famous for carpets made out of goats  hair, devotees offer goat hair with the yellow powder to God.


Xxxxx Subham xxxxx

 Tags- Haldi Festival, Turmeric, Shepherd community Baba

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