PANDHARPUR

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This is a prominent pilgrim centre, famous for its temple of Lord Vitthal. Thousands of devotees gather here in the festive Hindu month of Ashadhi Ekadashi.

Pandharpur is a city and a municipal council in Solapur district in the Indian state of Maharashtra.

Religious Importance
Pandharpur is one of the most respected pilgrimage sites in Maharashtra. It is located on the banks of the Bhima river, which is also known as Chandrabhaga (fondly referred as it appears like a half-moon, actual Chandrabhaga river is now called Chenab and is in J&K). Pandharpur hosts the famous Vithoba temple, on the banks of the river. Vithoba is considered to be Krishna, an incarnation of Vishnu; Vitthala is said to have been derived from the word Vishnu in Kannada. Vithoba's consort is Rakhumai or Rukmini.

The worship of Vishnu - Vitthala at Pandharpur is derived mainly from the puranas and has been augmented by the contribution of the great Vaishnava saints of Maharashtra and Karnataka from the 13th through the 17th centuries: Dnyaneshwar, Namdev, Sant Eknath, Tukaram, Purandara Dasa, Vijaya Dasa, Gopala Dasa, Jagannatha Dasa.

This temple, covering a vast area, has a total of six gates. The eastern entrance to this temple is known as the Namdev gate. The sanctum enshrines a standing image of Vithoba also known as Panduranga, Pandhari or Vitthala.

Pandharpur hosts four "Yatras" in a year - of which "Aashadhi Yatra" attracts most (around 0.5 to 0.7 million) pilgrims to Pandharpur. Pilgrims take holy bath in river Bhima and usually stand in queues 3km long in order to take "Darshana" of Lord Vitthala. The second most important yatra is Kartiki.

Most of the devotional songs sung by great singer like Bhimsen Joshi, Lata Mangeshkar and others are at the centre of Lord Vithoba.

Pandharpur is also the birth place of famous painter M.F. Hussain.

Education Institutes
On the outskirts of pandharpur,near Gopalpur there is famous engineering college called College of Engineering Pandharpur runned by authorative B.P.Ronge

Distance from Pune: 
204 km