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Pandharpur





India officially the Republic of India, is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second most populous country, and the most populous liberal democracy in the world. India is a union of twenty-eight states and seven federally-governed union territories. New Delhi is the capital of India.
 
Pandharpur is a town in district Solapur in state of Maharashtra in Western India. Krishna at Pandharpur, 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. 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.
 
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 3 kilometers long in order to take Darshana of Lord Vitthala. The second most important yatra is Kartiki. Pandharpur is also the birth place of famous painter M.F. Hussain.

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