Delayed monsoon followed by delayed sowing in Maharashtra has affected the participation of warkaris in the annual wari procession. This year, the Sant Dnyaneshwar Maharaj and Sant Tukaram Maharaj palkhis, saw a decline in participation of warkaris by almost 10-15 per cent.
TheKharif sowing activity across Maharashtra has been delayed and according to the state agricultural department, the sowing activity has been completed only on 27 per cent area as compared to 40 per cent in the same period last year.
Generally, all the warkaris belong to the farmer community and after receiving the first rainfall in their areas by mid-June, they complete all sowing related activities and then, join the palkhi procession.
The palkhi procession of Sant Tukaram Maharaj left Dehu on Thursday with 1.80 lakh warkaris. Shivajirao More, descendant of Sant Tukaram Maharaj and trustee of Vitthal Rukmini Mandir Samiti Pandharpur, said, “This year, the number of warkaris who participated in the wari has decreased because of delayed sowing. But one should not worry about it because the remaining warkaris will join the procession after finishing their agriculture related work. It is possible that most of them will join at Baramati or Akluj halt.”
Vilas Dhage Patil, a trustee of the Alandi Devasthan, said that he noticed a decrease in the numberof warkaris in this annual wari procession, but does not have any details regarding the exact number of participants. “The number has reduced may be because of delayed sowing specifically in the Marathwada region. We are hoping that monsoon spreads across Maharashtra and the warkaris join the palkhi procession soon.”
Patil informed that around 2.5 to 2.8 lakh warkaris have participated in the palkhi of Sant Dnyaneshwar Maharaj, which started from Alandi on Friday. The number of warkaris is expected to go up by the time the palkhi reaches Phaltan, Barad.
The palkhi procession of Sant Tukaram Maharaj and Sant Dnyaneshwar Maharaj arrived in Pune on Saturday and will move towards Pandharpur on Monday.
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