येळ कोट  येळ कोट  जय मल्हार

On the right bank of the river is the market street containing the shops of the chief grain dealers, moneylenders, and merchants, and most of the dwellings. On the left bank is the noted temple of Khandoba and the houses of the worshippers, priests and a few others. The temple lies on the site of a legendary appearance by the God Khandoba to a favourite devotee, a milkmaid named Palai in whose honour the village name was changed, from Rajapur to Pal. The temple was built about 500 years ago by a Vani named Aba bin Sheti Padhode. It is a very favourite resort with all classes and has been added to in many ways. The original structure consists of a stone shrine or gabhara and a porch thirty-five feet by twenty-eight from outside. The porch is enclosed by four pillars very plain but of the old pattern, the shaft being cut in rectangular, Octagonal and cylindrical blocks, but in mortar which shows that the temple is not older than the thirteenth century. The image-chamber sixteen feet square inside contains on a pedestal two Zings with brass masks representing Khandoba and his consort Mhalsabai. On the right hand is a black stone image of Banubai another wife of Khandoba, and behind are brass figures on horseback representing Khandoba's chief minister Hegadi Pendhari and his wife.

The porch holds in niches on the north the image of Ganapati and on the south the image of Siddhavasini. On the north is the drain for water poured on the images, covered with a canopy and flanked by stone horses. To these buildings Dhanaji bin Sambhaji Jadhav, the well known Maratha general who flourished in the reigns of Shivaji (1627-1680) and Rajaram (1689-1700) and died in 1709, added a hall or mandap twenty-one feet square with open sides.

It is supported on twelve pillars about two feet high and similar to those in the gabhara porch and surrounded by a bench with a carved back. The roof has the usual broad carved eaves and parapet. The whole is of stone but the pillars are disfigured by whitewash and painting. Several of them are coated with brass and have a little poor carving. At each corner of the mandap is a small pinnacle and in the centre a small arched spire or shikhar. Over the porch of the shrine is a rather large spire and over the shrine itself is the main spire about fifty feet high off the ground, and tapering from the base which is as large as the shrine roof. All the spires are of brick and more or less ornamented in stucco with niches painted with mythological designs and images of gods and goddesses. The ornamentation is neither good nor elaborate. But the parts of the building are in good proportion which make it look massive and imposing without being heavy.
The temple occupies the centre of a fine square court paved throughout and measuring one hundred and forty feet east to west by eighty feet north to south. The court also contains at the north-west corner a small shrine of Omkareshvar Mahadev, and in the south-west corner one of Hegadi. In front, that is east of the mandap is the canopy with the image of the sacred bull Nandi covered with brass. On each side are two carved stone lamp-pillars or dipmals about fifteen feet high. The bases are supported by grotesque stone images of elephants and bulls. Still further east is another rather larger canopy containing a brass-coated stone elephant, about one-third of life size and rather well-carved. To the south of the Nandi canopy is a small temple to Shivaji and to its north is a platform for the tulsi or basil plant. The wall of the court is about twenty feet high, and the west, the north-west, half of the south, and north half of the east side are all cloistered, the former in ogee arches and fine masonry, and the latter with flat roof resting on plain pillars of the old pattern built by Dhanaji Jadhav. The outer roof of these cloisters is flat and serves as a terrace and promenade.

Compartments of the cloisters are walled up at irregular intervals and used as lodgings for devotees and permanent worshippers and for stabling the horses attached to the god's establishment. In the pavement of the court are embedded stone tortoises, while between the Nandi canopy and the mandap is a large tortoise coated with brass. The court-yard has three entrances. The eastern is a small doorway six and a half feet wide flanked inside by two large stone lamp-pillars thirty feet high with twelve sets of brackets for lamps handsomely carved and by far the finest lamp-pillars in the court. This gate and lamp-pillars were built by Gamaji Chavhan, a patil of Nher in the Khatav taluka. The northern entrance is another small doorway built by the Shindes in their cloisters. The southern about twelve feet high by five feet wide is the chief and the finest gateway to the south of Dhanaji Jadhav's cloisters.

Inside, it is flanked by two cloistered chambers, the western chamber forming the end of Dhanaji's cloisters and containing an image of Maruti; the eastern consisting of two cloisters and containing a smaller image of Ganapati was built by the Ghorpades of Mudhol. On the top is an ornamental music-chamber or nagarkhana in brick and mortar which with the archway of the gate was the work of the Manes of Rahimatpur. Outside the court is an outer yard also paved with stone. The east side has a rough wall with some ruined cloisters; the south side contains a rectangular stone building originally built with a dome and eaves supported by carved brackets, of which the latter raised by Dhanaji Jadhav remain. The rest of the south side and most of the west is taken up by buildings, but in the west is another very large gateway thirty feet high, twenty feet broad and two feet thick, with a massive stone pointed archway about six feet broad inside. This was erected by Yamaji Shivdev, the founder of the Karad Mutalik family.

The number of prominent historical families in the Deccan who have bestowed gifts on this temple shows the great veneration in which it was held. Besides lands assigned for the maintenance of its establishment the temple enjoys a Government yearly cash grant. Many families prominent in the history of the Deccan have bestowed gifts on the temple, at which a great fair in celebration of the marriage of God Khandoba is held annually in the month of Pausha (December-January) [ Grant Duff Vol. II 298.]. A good amount is collected as offerings at the time of the fair and many offerings are made throughout the year. A clerk superintends the finances of the establishment and carries the metal masks of the god in procession. The worshippers and priests are Guravs and Brahmans. T

he great yearly fair held in the month of Paush or December-January is attended by about 15,000 people from all parts of Satara and the neighbouring districts. The pilgrims usually camp in the bed of the Tarla which at this time forms a large dry beach. The fair proper lasts three or four days, being the days during which the marriage ceremony of the god Khandoba, is supposed to proceed. The days vary slightly with some conjunction of stars. The traders linger some time longer. Copper and brass pots, bangles, piece-goods, silk-cloth, country blankets, and other small articles are sold at the fair. Sanitary arrangements are also made. Cholera once broke out during the 1869 fair when forty-three out of sixty-one reported cases proved fatal. The temple except the front portion of its outer wall is well maintained. Weekly market is held at Pal on every Sunday.
 
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