Sri Shirdi Sai Baba has a lot of devotees and a lot of them desire to visit his abode, Shirdi atleast once in their lifetime. Sometimes, you would travel to Pune but would not get enough time to plan your visit to Shirdi which is at a distance of approximately 200km.
Fret not, at a distance of 25km on the off old Bombay and Pune highway is Shirgaon, popularly known as Prati Shirdi where you can find a replica of Shirdi Sai Sansthan.
This place also attracts a lot of devotees and every ritual followed in Shirdi is done here as well.
Sai Baba Temple at Prati Shirdi
The beautiful entrance of the temple welcomes all its devotees with open arms; the design and architecture of the temple in Prati Shirdi is similar to that of the Shirdi temple. This temple was built by Mr. Prakash Deole in the year 2003. The temple is thirteen year old and stands proudly in the village of Shirgaon and a hoarding at the entrance of the road will lead you to the temple.
As Shirdi, this temple is also flooded with a lot of devotees on Thursdays and during Aarti ritual. The major attractions within the temple premises are the Dwarakamaai, Neem tree where the Gurusthaan is, Chawadi, Anna Chatralay (a place where food is served to the devotees and a beautiful garden.
An entrance of the temple
The Anna Chatralay is to the left of the main shrine and it is a huge building that looks like a palace which serves food to devotees at 12:30 PM to 3:30 PM and 6:30 PM to 9:30 PM at a nominal price of 10 INR and there are tickets available for the same. However, children under five years are offered free food.
There is a big area outside the temple dedicated exclusively for parking two-wheelers and four-wheelers. You may also find a lot of vendors selling souvenirs, statues and holy threads of Sai Baba. You may also find a lot of fruit and flower sellers trying to attract visitors to sell the Puja items.
A view of the temple
The idol of Sri Sai Baba inside the temple is similar to the one you find in Shirdi and the Aarti rituals also take place at the same time as in Shirdi.
So, next time if you are unable to visit Shirdi while you are in Pune; do not worry - just book a taxi or call for an auto and head straight into the village of Shirgaon where Baba awaits to bless his devotees.