Palki festival showcases the distinctive feature of the Maharashtrian culture. This is a 1000-year-old tradition, which has been following by the warkaris (people who follow the wari, a fundamental ritual).
People perform collective singing, dancing, chanting (Dnyanba-Tukaram
in what are called as Dindis or organised group of warkaris) to the holy
town of Pandharpur in Hindu months of Ashadh (June-July) and Karthik
Palkhi Festival, which lasts for 22 days, starts in the month of
Jyeshth (June). Every year on the eleventh day of the first half of the
month of Ashadh, the Palkhi reaches Pandharpur. Every saint, right from
Sant Jyaneshwar to Sant Tukaram was following the wari tradition.
It was in the year 1685 that Tukaram's youngest son, Narayan Baba
wished to bring some change in the dindi-wari tradition by introducing
the Palkhi, which is a sign of social respect.
In coarse of time, this tradition is becoming popular day by day.
Nearly 1.5 lakh devotees proceed along with the Sant Tukaram Palkhi from
Dehu village, while a total of 2.25 lakh devotees march along with the
Sant Jnyaneshwar Palkhi.
Palkhi is tradition followed by the warkaris and a unique aspect of Maharashtrian culture.