Sunil is a friend and I riding Royal Enfield Thunderbird Twinspark motorbike driving at National Highway 65 heading towards Pali. Wind is harsh and speedy difficult to drive. Traffic is heavy specially trucks. Drive slowly Drive carefully – The mantra. Today we are going to worship Royal Enfield motorbike. Yes, you have read correctly. Love for Royal Enfield motorbike is always existing since childhood but worship? Even Sunil is having Royal Enfield motorbike since ages converted into diesel engine but worship? Anyways, Sunil is from Jodhpur and aware about the location – Chotila village.
Jodhpur to Chotila village, National Highway 65 is 50 km approx.
We started journey at 1:30 pm from Jodhpur reached Chotila village, NH 65 at 2:45 noon hours.
Number of trucks, buses, cars, motorcycles or you can say all modes of road transport no matter private or government are parked. We park our motorbike on the right side of the road. Shoes removed to walk towards an ornamented (with bangles) tree and later towards the shrine. Prayers, offerings and a 360 degree circle around the shrine. 80s old model Royal Enfield motorbike parked neatly covered with garlands. This is the very first time since I am born and driving motorbike watching devotees worshiping Royal Enfield motorbike by offering garlands. Curious enough to know more we walk towards dharamshala situated close by and history as told by Shree Hemraj Purohit:
Vikram Samvat 2045 ( 2nd December, 1988 ) night hours at 10 accident happened at this location. Om Banna along with his friend was driving Royal Enfield motorbike from Pali on the way towards Rohat when their motorcycle hit Jaal tree. Om Banna died on spot but friend survived. Motorcycle was taken to Kerla (now known as Rohta) by policemen. After two/three years few say after six months suddenly one night the motorcycle started automatically on its own at police station. Few say it was later seen at accident site. This happened quiet a few time. Each time motorbike was take back to police station but again was found near the tree. It was decided to send the motorbike to Hukma Ram’s house – a potter at Chotila. Again one day the motorcycle started at potter’s house. It was then decided by locals to place motorbike at the accident site near the tree. Since then motorbike never started on its own.
One day Om Banna showed miracle to his grandmother by appearing at night and saying I am not dead, I am alive. He also requested his grandmother to donate two bigha land to Hemraj Purohit which was done. They say only after six months of death Om Banna started showing miracles to village people and faith developed among them. Many truck drivers driving at National Highway 65 said they felt that someone sitting with them during night hours and many stories how Om Banna saved few accidents.
Om Banna died at the age of 23 or 24 years and was the only son of his father. His son Maha Prakrami Singh is 23 years old now was born almost two months after that accident. Late Om Banna grandmother is no more alive but father Shree Jog Singh stay at Chotila village three km from the shrine.
Eight days after Diwali there is huge gathering of devotees at this location. The location where currently worship is done was actually land for cattles to graze but as it was an accident place and number of devotees was increasing the land was transferred to Om Banna’s father and equal size of land was donated by Om Banna’s father for cattle graze little away from shrine. Last 20 years motorcycle was near to Jaal tree but as NH 65 widening was going on nine months back it was shifted little inside close to fields.
Buses from Jodhpur Bus Depot for Pali, Sanderao, Abu Road will drop you at Om Banna.
A small dharamshala is there if you want to stay at night or a stop in a day for prayers and a little rest.
We went to Chotila village to meet Om Banna’s father. He is old but welcoming guest is his priority. We were offered water, tea and talks for hours. We saw a 1962 model Russian make tractor not in use since Banna death was purchased for Rs. 13,100 only. Om Banna son is currently studying at college. We met him at shrine location. We were showed an article about a film in making under Koyal Film Production banner Mumbai very shortly. In short it was a new experience.
While returning towards Jodhpur left hand side little far from shrine we stop at Prahladchand Mangilalji Prajapat shop for famous Mogar ki Kachori and for tea Prajapat tea stall.