Monday, June 27, 2016

Devmogara in the Hills of Satpuda Range

Devmogra in the Hills of Satpuda range

We were passing through the beautiful forests of Sagai area of Sagbara Taluka of Narmada District of Gujarat. It was Sunday. Many people mounted on Jeeps and two wheelers were going to one direction. Some were stopping enroute and collecting fire woods. Looking to the moods and colours of the cloths, one can presume that they were going for a religious fair. But ours and their destination was the same, the Devmogara temple of Devmogara (Pandre) Devi in the forest. Mostly people offer dry coconut to the deity, but many carry goats and chickens for offering. They sacrifice animals for their mannat. One employee of the ONGC won the case of his regularisation, one family got a male child, one guy got a new job, one farmer expect good crop during the rainy season, etc, were the reasons for they animal offerings to the deity. People come with their families, relatives, friends; cook meal of rice, vegetables and the sacrificed animals and enjoy the Sunday lunch under the umbrella of the Devmogara Devi. The local trust has provided the space for kitchens and dining. The sacrifices of animals are performed outside the temple wall. Some do themselves and some take the help of others. They cook and consume all in the campus. Nothing to carry back.

Devmogara is a temple of the Princely State of Sagbara and is managed by their family trust. The Thakurs were the rulers. It is an ancient temple. The trust published a booklet but later withdrew it due to some dispute of the history of the temple. The people are mostly tribal. There are Vasava, Vadavi, Tadavi, etc, tribes living in the area. Forest Right Act has given them land rights and development has given them means of alternative earnings other than agriculture and forest produces. No barefoot tribal. Bikes have improved their mobility and growth has brought cash in their pockets. When rich men go to Europe and other countries to enjoy their holidays, the tribal of Sagbara enjoy the Sunday Picnic with their families and friends sharing the feast of the sacrifice. 

The area is rich in biodiversity with many species of animals and birds. They are rare like: barking dear, grey horn bill, the most beautiful and colourful dunkel parrot, red junglefowl, Palm civet, and many varieties of birds and animals. Some of the rare species of trees and plants are there. Musali, the ginseng of India is produced here. It cares stomach and potency issues. 

Mahashivratri is a Grand Feast Day, when the queue of Darshana is 2.5 km long of which many carry the animals to sacrifice. If you are keen to enjoy the feast with tribal taste, visit the temple on any Sunday or wait for the Shivratri to meat the tribal in thousands. An Eco Tourism site has been developed with some room accommodations. Do visit on weekends and enjoy the beautiful forests of the Satpuda (7 mountains) Hills, the wilds, the biodiversity of nature with tribal customs. Satpuda was famous for tiger in past, that will be established with a Tiger Safari Park in the region. The area will a major tourists attraction with Statue of Unity, Valley of Flowers, Zarvani trails, and the Satpuda Forest with their wilds. Don't miss.

India had unique model of religion, tourism and employment generation; the model of success and sustainability. Faith governs over the logic. 

27 June 2016

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