Mumbai-based devotee has donated a five-wick lamp made from 1,351 grams of gold worth Rs 39 lakh to the renowned Sai Baba temple, temple authorities said on Saturday.
Temple authorities identified the devotee as Jayantbhai, from Mumbai, but refused to divulge any more details about him.
Rubal Agarwal, the chief executive officer of the Shri Saibaba Sansthan Trust (SSST) said that the offering was made by the devotee on the first day of the three-day Ramnavami festival that began in Shirdi on Saturday.
The gold “panchaarti” lamp will be used at the saint’s “samadhi mandir” during rituals, Agarwal said.
The first day of the festival saw the arrival of processions bringing in 175 palanquins from different parts of the state, all of them having made the journey on foot, said temple authorities.
They said that elaborate arrangements had been made as thousands of devotees are expected to arrive at the temple town over the next three days to participate in various rituals.
Agarwal said that due to the festival, the morning ‘aarti’ (kakad), at 4:30am, and the night ‘aarti’ (shejaarti), post 10pm, would not be held on Sunday and Monday.
The first day of the festival saw state Finance Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar and guardian minister Ram Shinde in attendance.>