A one-of-a-kind workshop titled ‘Warkari skills workshop’ will be organised by IT Dindee on June 11. The workshop aims to encourage IT professionals to participate in the annual palkhi procession of Sant Dnyaneshwar and Sant Tukaram from Alandi and Dehu to Pandharpur.
“For the past one month we have been holding workshops on a small scale every weekend. However, on June 11, the workshop will be on a larger scale and will see the participation of as many as 200 people. The workshop introduces participants to basic traditional practices of wari such as singing devotional songs, playing music instruments like tal and mrudang and devotional dance,” said Ajay Bhajan, one of the members of the group IT Dindee, which was formed in the year 2006 by a group of IT professionals to bring together others from their field to be a part of the annual pilgrimage.
This year, the walk will take place on two days. While on June 18, a 20-km walk will take place from Alandi to Pune, another walk will take place on June 20 between Pune and Saswad. Speaking further about the Warkari skills workshop, Bhajan said, “During the wari, the warkaris play the music instruments tal and mrudang in a certain rhythm, which is simple but soulful. Likewise, devotional songs like ‘Ram Krishna Hari’ and ‘Gyanoba Mauli Tukaram’ are easy to pick up as they do not have complicated lyrics. Similarly, the devotional dance involves putting the leg in the front and back in a particular rhythm. The workshop will introduce the participants to pick up these simple skills so that they do it in sync during the wari.”
The IT Dindee group, says Bhajan, has grown in numbers with each passing year. Talking about its inception, he says that before the formation of IT Dindee, wari used to have people from all walks of life other than the ones from IT/BPO/Technology field professionals. The professionals, he says, used to notice wari due to traffic diversions, through notices in their organisations, pictures in newspapers.
“They were curious but not very sure whether they themselves can be part of it or what could be the eligibility criteria. That’s how IT Dindee was born in 2006,” says Bhajan. Bhajan states that in addition to spreading awareness about the tradition of wari among the IT professionals, the IT Dindee also makes an effective use of the contribution collected from individuals. Every year, the amount collected is donated for social causes such as Nirmal Vari Abhiyan and food and medicine distribution to warkaris. This year, the group plans to distribute sweets to military soldiers posted at Kargil.