|Founded by||Atri Rishi|
|• Mayor||Shital Jadhav|
|Time zone||UTC+5:30 (IST)|
|Lok Sabha constituency||Hingoli|
|Vidhan Sabha constituency||Kinwat|
|Civic Agency||Mahurgad Nagar Panchayat|
Mahur or Mahurgad is a town and religious place in Nanded district of Maharashtra, India. Mahur is the birthplace of Hindu God Dattatreya. Dattatreya parents Atri Rishi and Sati Anasuya Mata lived here. Brahmadev, Vishnudev and Lord Shiva once got a news about Anusaya Mata that there is no one more pious and pure as her. To test her piousness they arrived under the garb of asking Alm (bhiksha). Near Mahur, There is a Pious confluence of River Penganga and River Pus at Hiwara Sangam village, Tal. Mahagaon Vidarbha, from where the river flows northward. Penganga river forms a border between Vidarbha and Marathwada. Mahur falls just about 3kms inside Marathwada due to river banks.
There are three mountains in Mahur. The first one is having Renuka Mahar devi mata Temple, who is mother of the god Parshuram. Other two are called Datta Shikhar and Atri Anasuya Shikar Temples. Datta Shikhar is highest of all. Mahur has a sacred temple to Renuka Mata, which is considered one of the three and half Shakti Peethas (temples) in the state. A big fair is held here every year on the occasion of Vijayadashami.
Sahasrarjun attacked Renuka Mahar Devi while somewhere in today's Telangana, for he wanted to grab the sacred Kamdhenu cow — this cow has the divine power to fulfill wishes. When Renuka Mahar Devi refused to him that saying asking gift of your own choice by the guest visitor is uncalled. He attacked her & injured her. She dies in this & when Lord Parshuram knew about it, he went berserk. Then the elderly people pacified him & asked him to do the last rites in Mahur under Dattatreya's guidance. Then he was told by him that Mahar devi Renuka Mata will appear on first mountain for you to worship. This became the famous Mahar Devi Renuka Mata temple. The "Matru Tirth" (means sacred place for Mother's worship) Place on this Mountain is the one which is where today stands a lake, is "Antyeshti Sthan" (Means place where last rites were performed).
There are many other temples in Mahur like Rishi Jamdagni Mahar Temple, Lord Parshuram Mahar Temple, Kalika Mata Temple, Devdevshwar Temple, and also the Caves called Pandav Leni. There is Fort in Mahur. This was built by Gond kingdom of Chandrapur. This fort is quite large, but very few visitors travel inside.
Mahur finds mention in the ancient Devi Bhagawatam as "Matripura" or "Matapur", where it is mention as one of the famous pilgrimages. In Devi Gita the final and most important chapter of the text, it is mentioned as one of the important places of Shakti worship:
Appasaheb Deshmukh was the ruler of Mahur sarkar and the sardar of gond King in the 12th century AD. Bharat Ratn Nanaji Deshmukh was his descendant.
Raje Udaram Deshmukh of Mahur
Raje Udaram, a Deshastha Rigvedi Brahmin from Washim was the Jagirdar of Mahur. He was initially a sardar in Nizamshahi Kingdom along with Sardar Lakhuji Jadhavrao, father of Rajmata Jijau Saheb. In year 1616, both Lakhuji and Udaram deserted Malik Ambar to join Mughals. Maratha Sardars were desired by both sides for their light infantry and cavalry. Both Sardars changed sides according to their interests. Raje Udaram was a good friend of Sardar Raje Lakhuji Jadhavrao. He died in 1632 AD, on the foothills of Daulatabad fort. Later Pandita Sawitribai or Rai Bagan, his wife, was the ruler of Mahur. There is a story of her valour. After death of her husband Raje Udaram-Deshmukh of the Mahur in Varhad province, who was in Mughal services, she took sword and joined Mughal services. After her son Jagjivanrao's death she continued to manage her jagir along with her grandson, Baburao. She was maintaining the Jagirs in Berar province, viz., Mahur, Pusad, Washim, Malegaon, Umarkhed, etc. Aurangzeb entrusted this Mahur-queen with the responsibility to quell the rebellion of Sardar Herchandrai. Savitri thereupon readied herself for the encounter. Taking the army from the Mahur-hills she proceeded towards the warfield. She tied her choli (bodice) to the flag-pole and exhorted to the army: “I am marching on the army, making flag of choli. "You are, after all men! You ought to be more valorous than me! Fight with full might! Kill the enemy! Win the battle! Protect the honour of your sister!" this call by her really kindled fire in the minds of the soldiers and they fought relentlessly. She also personally fought with all her might and consequently Harchandrai was defeated. For her valour during the war of accession in 1658, she was given an honorary name Rai Bagan by Aurangzeb. The meaning of Rai Bagan is Royal Tigress.
Raje Udaram was a title conferred by Shahajahan to the family. Hence, all the descendants of Udaram called themselves Raje Udaram. Peshwas, in early 18th century questioned the title. But later permission was given to use the title. In 1802, the Jahagirdari was divided into six sons. And each keeping the title called himself Raje Udaram Deshmukh.
The Renuka Devi Temple as a Shakti Peeth
The temple is considered as a revered shrine for the Shaktism sect, because of the above told mythology and also because the Shrine is a Shakti Peetha. It is believed that Renuka Mata, (the wife of Sage Jamadagni) was decapitated by her own son Parashurama and her head fell here. Renuka was later given rebirth as a boon by Sage Jamadagni to his son Parashurama. The temple is considered as a Shakti Peetha because of the mythology of Daksha yaga and Sati's self immolation.
Shakti Peethas are Durga or Adiparashakti shrines that are believes to have enshrined with the presence of Shakti due to the falling of body parts of the corpse of Sati Devi, when Lord Shiva carried it and wandered. There are 51 Shakti Peeth linking to the 51 alphabets in Sanskrit. The Shakti of Mahur is addressed as Renuka Devi. Most of the Shakti Peetha is associated with a Kalabhairava shrine.
All three important temples — Renuka Mata Temple, Lord Dattatreya Temple and Anusaya Mata Temple — are built on three mountain ranges. Mahur is surrounded by jungles rich with trees and wild life. There is teakwood trees everywhere. Peafowl, deer, black bears, panthers are very common in the jungle.
On one of the mountains is the ancient Mahurgad Fort constructed in the 12th century. Mahur was an important fort in ancient Berar history. It became a separate province in 1478 during the Bahmani Sultanate. It was one of the Sarkars (then district) with 20 parganas (towns) in Berar Subah (state) in Akbar's rule.
The main attractions in Mahur are Matapur Niwasini Shri Jagdamba Devi Temple or Renuka Devi Temple, Lord Dattatreya Temple, Anusaya Mata Temple, Devdeveshwar Temple, Lord Parshuram Temple, Sarvatirtha, Matru-Tirtha, Bhanutirth, Hati darvaza, Bal samudra, Pandav Leni, Mahurgad Fort, Mahakali Temple (In the fort), Mahur Museum, Sonapir Dargah, Shaikh Farid Water fall (Wazara), Palace of Raje Udaram. Raje Udaram Deshmukh and later his brave wife RaiBagan (Royal Tigress) were the rulers of Mahur.
People who visit Mahur also visit Unkeshwar Hot Spring (90 km from Pusad; 50 km from Mahur; 15 km from Kinwat), which has natural sources of hot water. This sulphur-rich water is supposed to have medicinal value. The name Unkeshwar is because of Lord Unkeshwar (MAHADEV i.e. Shiva) temple and Aashram complex.
Devdeveshwari mandir belongs to Mahanbhav Panth, basically called a nidra sthan (sleeping place) of Jagat Guru Shree Dattatreya Prabhu. It is at elevated outskirt of Mahur town, 2 km from Mahur bus stand.
Daily Shree Dattatreya Prabhu will take nitya snan (daily bath) at meruwada talao (tank) in Mahur, bhiksha (the meal served to a sadhu or Indian monk) at Kolhapur, bhojan (lunch) at Panchaleshwar and get back to sleep in Devdeveshwar mandir Mahur (nidra sthan of God Dattatreya Prabhu). Jagat Guru Shree Dattatreya swami is a chiranjiv avtar (Immortal) so it is believed that even today Shree Dattatreya swami comes to sleep here.
Travel facilities and Pilgrimage Amenities
There are Maharashtra state transport buses that go from Nagpur, Nanded, Kinwat, Yavatmal, Amravati, Akola and Pusad to Mahur. The nearest airport is Nanded airport which is connected to all the major cities of India. From Nanded, You can use private car or taxi to reach Mahurgad.
For people from Mumbai and Pune visitors it is better to reach Nanded by train & take a Bus, Private car or taxi from there. From Nanded Bus stand frequent buses are there.
Hadgaon also has bus and taxi transport going to Mahur. The only way to approach Mahur is by Road. There are frequent buses (State-run ST buses as well as private buses) from Nanded, Yavatmal and Pusad.
Accommodation facilities are available in Mahur city (7 km from the temple). All types of accommodation facilities are available like lodges, hotels, government rest houses. Foods served by local hotels, dhabas (roadside eateries for the travelers) are of good quality and served fresh.
On auspicious occasions like Navaratris, Datta Pournima; Mahapuja is organised which is followed by Mahaprasad (Feast for the Pilgrims).
- https://www.maharashtratourism.gov.in/treasures/temple/mahurgad[dead link]
- "Mahurgud | Sree Datta Vaibhavam".
- Devi Bhagawatam, Ninth Book, chapter XXXIV: On the description of the various hells, p. 939 Devi Bhagawatam, tr. by Swami Vijnanananda, (1921-22).
- Devi Gita, chapter XXXVIII: The Vow and the Sacred Places of the Devi Devi Gita (Song of the Goddess), excerpt from the Srimad Devi Bhagawatam, translated by Swami Vijnanananda (Hari Prasanna Chatterji), 1921. "O King of Mountains! Still I am now telling something out of My affection to My Bhaktas. Hear. There is a great place of pilgrimage named Kolhapura in the southern country. Here the Devi Laksmi always dwells. The second place is Matripura or Matapur in the Sahyadrî mountain; here the Devî Renuka dwells." Verses: 3-10.
- Proceedings - Indian History Congress. Indian History Congress. 1945. p. 300.
This raya baghini was wife of Raja Udajiram the founder of the family of Raja Udaram jagirdar and Deshmukh of Mahur . Raja Udajiram was a Deshastha Rigvedi Brahman of Berar.
- Kulkarni, A. R. Medieval Maratha Country.
- Purandare, Babasaheb. Raja Shiv Chhatrapati Part 1 & 2. Purandare Publications.
- परमानंद, कवींद्र. श्री शिवभारत. भारत ईतिहास संशोधन मंडळ, पुणे. pp. २९१, २९२.
- "Kottiyoor Devaswam Temple Administration Portal". kottiyoordevaswom.com/. Kottiyoor Devaswam. Retrieved 20 July 2013.
- Mahur, in Nanded Maharashtra Govt. Official website.
- Mahur Fort The Official Website of Maharashtra Tourism.
- Mahur map