The blessings and stature of Sai Baba are renowned all over the world. But Shirdi, Maharashtra, is the epicentre of the saint’s spiritual journey. It is here that Sai Baba lived for more than fifty years. It is here that countless miracles were witnessed, hearts melted and lives changed. In Shirdi, are the last remains of Sai Baba and it is here that thousands of devotees come day after day for darshan. The Sai Mandir or Sai Baba Samadhi Mandir, where the tomb of one of the most loved saints lies, usually has long queues and wait times. However, the temple offers VIP Darshan facilities to devotees, making it easier and faster to reach the sacred sanctum.
Sai Baba Samadhi Mandir
Sai Baba emphasised ‘Sabka Malik Ek’ and perhaps that is one of the main reasons why he is revered across different religions, regions and age groups. He made Shirdi his home, a town that reverberates in the aura of spirituality and divinity. And at the heart of the town lies the Sai Mandir which shines as the beacon of hope and prayer.
Sai Baba Samadhi Mandir or Sai Mandir’s main administrative body is the Saibaba Sansthan Trust. The Trust organizes the various practical aspects of the temple’s functioning, including darshan, aarti, donations, prasad distribution, donations, managing crowds etc. The tomb where the mortal remains of Sai Baba are laid is the most sacred area of the temple. Devotees line up to bow their heads at the Samadhi. Similarly, there are long queues for aarti. Hence, the temple authorities, also offer VIP Darshan passes for devotees, including senior citizens, so that they can skip standing in lines, avoid the crowds and attain satisfaction and blessings without too much hassle.
Shirdi VIP Darshan
VIP Darshana and VIP Aarti, essentially imply a separate entrance section for devotees with this pass. The visitors can walk in directly without standing in a queue. For VIP Darshan devotees have to log in to the official website sai. org.in. They can also log in through the temple’s mobile app. Besides, passes for the VIP Darshan and Aarti are also available at the PRO office in the temple.
However, online registration is the best way to ensure your VIP Darshan since you can use the pass directly and immediately on arrival. All you have to do is log into the website with either your mobile number or email ID and password. Fill in the details on the registration form, such as name, age, ID proof etc. Finally, you can book your VIP pass for Rs. 200. You can take a printout of the pass and keep it handy for viewing at the VIP entrance section for security check.
VIP Aarti Pass
A VIP pass can also be booked for Aarti at the Sai Mandir. The procedure is the same, where the devotees have to log into the temple’s website and register themselves. The VIP Aarti pass is Rs. 600 for the morning or Kakad Aarti which begins at 5 A.M. For the afternoon and night aartis, the price of the VIP pass is Rs. 400.
The holders of VIP Aarti pass have a separate queue in front of the statue of Sai Baba. This allows them to be closer to the idol and also reach it faster than waiting in the regular queues.
A VIP pass for senior citizens above 70 years can be obtained for free at the Sai Mandir. Also, one person can accompany the senior citizen whose entry is from Gate No.3.
Advantages of VIP Darshan
Below are some points to sum up the benefits of a VIP pass:
- Avoid long queues
- Reach for darshan in a quicker time
- Get seating in the VIP area
- A token for Prasad and a water bottle is given to the VIP pass holders
- The pass is valid for only one day and for the date and time mentioned on the pass
- The pass is not transferable
- You must carry ID proof for entry
Saiteerth Theme Park
At a distance of 5 minutes from Sai Baba Samadhi Mandir is the Saiteerth Theme Park. India’s first devotional theme park, it is the perfect next-stop destination after paying a visit to the Sai Mandir. The theme park, developed by the Malpani Group uses state-of-the-art technology for visitors to view and experience the life journey of Sai Baba. With special shows, such as Sabka Malik Ek, Laser Show and Giant Screen it enumerates the various nuances and impacts of the spiritual leader’s life.
The Saiteerth Theme Park also offers VIP passes for its various activities and attractions. The VIP pass rate is Rs. 950 for all shows and Rs. 1121 for the shows and food for adults. Buying a VIP card is helpful, as it doesn’t require visitors to stand in queues for the shows.
VIP Darshan in Shirdi is a convenient possibility that can be availed by paying nominal rates. Both at the Sai Temple and Saiteerth Theme Park, a VIP pass is the quickest way to get around. It is highly beneficial for visitors who have health issues, or who are on a tight time schedule.