Only 'Molly' knows what will happen: the farmer is distraught as he walks with the palanquin Pune News

Gulab Tangde, 69, a farmer from Ruina village, has been walking the holy palanquin pilgrimage for the past eight years, each step taken with unwavering faith. Gulab has been working in the fields since childhood. However, this year they pray to God for good rains and a good harvest.

“I have a sugarcane farm,” he said. “I planted the seeds and there was some rain in the beginning. But now there is nothing.”

Explaining his dire situation, he said, “My entire family depends on these crops. Now what will happen to us without rains. Only our 'moli' (God only knows).

Similarly, Vasant Ambekar, 75, another farmer from Solapur, who has been participating in Palkhi for the past three years, owns a sugarcane and maize farm. Explaining the harsh reality of the season, he said, “There hasn't been much rain. I haven't earned anything from farming and I don't know what the future holds.

A festive offering

Despite these challenges, faith remains steadfast. “Right now we are walking towards our God with full devotion, He will guide us,” he added.

Anant Sarve, a 75-year-old farmer from Solapur, is equally affected by the lack of rain. He said that our fields are dry and our hopes are diminishing. “Our crops are our lifeline, and without water, we have little hope.” Yet his faith in Wari is unwavering. “We walk with devotion, confident that our prayers will be answered,” he said.

As these farmers begin their spiritual journey, Saint Tukaram Maharaj's palanquin leaves for Pandharpur from Vitthal Mandir in Akordi.

Thousands of warkaris joined the holy procession, chanting 'Tikaram-Tukaram' and clapping mridanga. The atmosphere in Pimpri Chinchwad was filled with devotion as the palanquin first rested at HA Colony in Pimpri and then at Kasarwadi and later at Dapodi for lunch, after which the procession continued towards Shivaji Nagar.

During the palanquin ceremony, the devotees chanted “Dyanuba Mooli Tukaram” to the tune of Tala Mridanga, Ektari Veena and Chapala. Women participated with great enthusiasm carrying Tulsi Vrindavas on their heads. Despite the light rain, the morale of the warriors remained low.

For these pious farmers, the pilgrimage is not just a journey of faith but a ray of hope amidst the uncertainty of their agricultural struggle. His unwavering devotion, even in the face of adversity, is a testament to his enduring passion and faith in his Molly.

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