Weekday : Thursday (Palki Procession)
In the days when Shri Sai Baba was physically living
in Dwarkamai Masjid, he used to sleep in Chawri on every alternate
night, between the year 1910 to 1918. This sojourn at Chawri
on every alternate night was preceded by a ‘palki’ procession with
all regal paraphernalia accompanying
Baba from Dwarkamai to Chawri.
This tradition of ‘palki’
procession continues with the same fervour and devotion. Today it
starts from Samadhi Mandir, which
is the eternal abode of Shri Sai in ‘Samadhi’. From Samadhi temple
it goes to Dwarkamai Masjid, from Dwarkamai
to Chawri and returns to Samadhi Mandir,
after which the ‘Shej Aarti’ is offered
Schedule of Palki procession
At 8.15 PM:
Shri Sai Baba’s old portrait draped in a crimson red colour Royal
robe, his Sacred staff (Satka)
and Sacred Slippers (Paduka) kept in a silver platter
are placed on the dais of ‘Samadhi’
for the darshan by the devotees, for about an hour.
9.00 – 9.15 PM:
The devotees and the attendants of ‘palki’ procession gather in
the Main hall of Samadhi Mandir and
sing devotional songs, bhajans, abhangs etc. in front of
Shri Sai Baba.
The ‘palki’ procession begins from Samadhi temple carrying Baba’s
portrait under state umbrella, Sacred
staff (Satka) and Sacred slippers (paduka) with all
regal splendor. A priest walks ahead with incense smoke of ‘loban’.
Traditionally the portrait of Baba is carried by the members of
the present generation of Tatya Kote Patil’s family (in old days
Baba was escorted by Tatya Kote Patil).
The procession enters Dwarkamai Masjid where the decked
up palanquin (palki) is kept ready in the foreyard of
the Masjid (This ‘palki’ was presented in the old days by Shri Sadu
Bhai Nayik, an ardent devotee of Shri Sai.)
In Dwarkamai, Baba’s portrait and the Sacred articles
like staff (satka) and slippers (paduka) are placed
on the blessed stone in the foreground of Masjid, and a brief programme
of Bhajan and Aarti by the devotees and the attendants
of ‘palki’ follows for about fifteen minutes. The programme
goes as per the fixed schedule as,“Jai Jai Ramkrishna Hari”,“Sai
naam Sukhdai” and ending with ‘Shirdi maze Pandharpur’.
After this Baba’s portrait and other sacred objects
are placed in the decked up ‘palki’ with due sanctity and
The procession carrying Baba’s ‘Palki’ on shoulders by the attendants
reaches Chawri where the worship
is offered to Baba, adorning silver throne at Chawri. Other Sacred
objects are also placed here on a small table ‘chaurang’and
the ‘Shodashopachaar puja’ (full ceremonial worship as prescribed
in scriptures) is offered to Shri Sai.The aartis, which are offered
here are Gheuni panchaarti / Aarti Saibaba / Shirdi Maze Pandharpur
and Ghaleen lotangan.
After aartis are performed Baba is offered ‘Chilum’.
Then the portrait and other sacred objects are placed again in the
‘Palki’ procession returns to Samadhi Temple.
Baba’s portrait and the sacred objects are placed
on the dais of the Samadhi once again.
‘Shej aarti’(Night Aarti) begins.
(As per schedule)
On other important occasions
the ‘palki’ procession goes around the Shirdi village from Chawri,
instead of directly returning to Samadhi
Temple. ‘Shej aarti’ is performed only after ‘palki’ returns
to the Samadhi Temple.