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Changdeo Fair

The Changdeo Fair is an annual event celebrated in the Jalgaon district of Maharashtra. The fair is a tribute to the memory of Changdeo Maharaj also known as Sage Markandeya, a saint who lived in this region many centuries ago. The Changdeo Temple is more than 3,000 years old and located at Changdeo village which falls in the Edlabad Taluka of Jalgaon District.

History of Changdeo Fair

According to local folklore, Sage Markandeya lived for over 1400 years. The sage used to meditate deeply and changed places after every 100 years or so. Changdeo is believed to be the last place where he sat in penance and had his fourteenth and last meditation. Hindus believe that the holy confluence of the two rivers makes the place even more pious. That’s why, they visit the temple in large numbers on the Changdeo Fair say to seek blessings from the holy place.

Importance of Changdeo Fair

The Changdeo Fair is held during the Magha month of the Hindu calendar or in the months of January or February according to the Christian calendar. The festival sees large crowds from all over Maharashtra congregating at the temple for paying their respects to Sage Markandeya who is believed to have attained salvation at this place. The temple is situated at the holy Sangam or union of the Tapi and Purna Rivers. The majestic Changdeo Temple overlooks this Sangam. Devotees come here, ring the holy bell and then go inside the dark interior of the temple to spend some moments of quiet solitude with the idol.

Changdeo Temple

The temple was built in 1700 and is a relatively simple structure. The gabhara on the outside has idols of Vithal and Rukmini made of black stone. The Samadhi of Sage Changdeo is situated behind a wall on the inner sanctum. The Godavari River flows to the west of the temple and creates a picturesque vision during the monsoon season. The temple has been declared a protected monument by the Archeological Survey of India.

Changdeo festival of India is organized in Changdeo, a spiritual place very well known for the Samadhi of Sage Markandeya. The union of rivers Purna and Tapi at this place is considered particularly pious by the villagers and devotees. The place is considered blessed because this is where Sage Markandeya finally found salvation after centuries of meditation and penance.

The Changdeo fair is held in the month of January and February and attracts about eighty thousand pilgrims every year. The devotees primarily consist of peasants and workers from the Vidarbha region of Maharashtra. Other major festivals celebrated here include the Maha Shivaratri and Jestha Sudha Saptami.

How to Reach Changdeo

The best way to reach Changdeo Temple is via road. Visitors can take the Milswali Sakhri road, which is about 183 km. The nearest railway station is Chandrapur, about 91 km from Changdeo. The nearest airport is at Nagpur which is about 177 km from Changdeo.

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