Introduction

 


Gram Devata

In ancient rural India every village had its own Gram devata ,or the village deity. It is believed that The Gram devata is the care taker of the complete village or town. This devata protects the community from evil forces. The deity provides protection or warns about impending danger to the community from any natural or super natural evil forces.

The Pune city was also a small village and for the centuries,it was ruled by several dynasties. The earliest evidence found reveals that the Rashtrakootas ruled this region ,(758 A. D.). At that time, Pune was referred to as Punaka Vishaya and Punya Vishaya, and later referred as Punaka Wadi and Punaka Desha.

After the Rashtrakootas, Pune was ruled by the Yadavas dynasty and after the fall of Yadavas, it came under Muslim dominance till the era of Chattrapati Shivaji Maharaj.

The historical references dates back to 16th century which reveals that , Tambdi Jogeshwari was the Gram Devata, of Pune alias Punwaadi or Kasabe-Pune , called at that time. This idol of deity is supposed to be 'Swayambhu' or self-born , that means formed without the medium of human agency. It has been carved in stone and of height approximately 2.5 feet. It is a standig statue with four arms.The upper right arm has 'Damaroo' and left arm has 'Trishul'. The lower right arm holds head of asura and left arm has bowl or kamandaloo. There is no Vahan or Carriage shown for the deity. The statue is fixed to an another stone at the back.

Being the Gram Devata of Pune , whenever there is an auspicious event like Wedding or Thread Ceremony or even a birth of a child , the devotees first visit the Jogeshwari Devi to seek her blessings. It is a custom to offer a first invitation to Devi , whenever there is a wedding or a thread ceremony .

Devotees of the Tambdi Jogeshwari have tremendous faith that,the Devi grants their wishes just by deciphering her followers mind.