The density, 192 persons per square mile, is above the District average.
The demand for land revenue in 1903-4 was 1•5 lakhs, and for cesses
Rs. io,ooo. Pandharpur is an open waving plain, almost bare of trees.
The chief rivers are the Bhima and the Man. Along the river banks
the soil is mostly deep black, and to the east of the Bhima it is
especially rich. On the high-lying land the soil is shallow, black and
grey, gravelly or broad. The climate is dry, and the rainfall scanty
Pandharpur Town.-Head-quarters of the tdluka of the same
name in Sholapur District, Bombay, situated in 17° 41' N. and
75' 26' E., on the right or south bank of the Bhima river, 31 miles
from Barsi Road station on the Great Indian Peninsula Railway,
with which it was connected in 1906 by an extension of the Barsi
Light Railway. Population (1901), 32,405. Hindus number 30,658;
Muhammadans, 1,217; Jains, 514. Pandharpur is one of the most-
frequented places of pilgrimage in the Bombay Presidency.
The best view of the town is from the opposite bank of the Bhima.
When the river is full, the broad, winding stream, gay with boats;
the islet temples of Vishnupad and Narad ; the rows of domed and
spired tombs on the farther bank; the crowded flight of steps lead-
ing from the water ; the shady banks, and among the tree-tops the
spires and pinnacles of many large temples, combine to form a scene
of much beauty and life. The debris of former buildings have some-
what raised the level of the centre of the town. In that part the
houses are comparatively well built, many of them being two or
more storeys high, with plinths of hewn stone. Pandharpur is highly
revered by Brahmans as containing a celebrated temple dedicated to
the god Vithoba, an incarnation of Vishnu. Vithoba's temple is near
the centre of that part of the town which is considered holy, and
is called Pandharikshetra, or ` the holy spot of Pandhari.' It has
a length from east to west of 350 feet, and a breadth from north to
south of 170 feet. In honour of this god three fairs are held
annually. At the first of these, in April, the attendance varies from
20,000 to 30,000 persons ; at the second, in July, from 1oo,ooo to
150,000 ; and at the third, in November, from 40,000 to 50,000.
Every month, also, four days before the full moon, from 5,000 to
1o,ooo devotees assemble here. Since 1865 a tax of 4 annas per
head has been levied on pilgrims at each of the three great fairs. The
town was constituted a municipality in 1855, and had an average
income during the decade ending 1901 of Rs. 67,400. In 1903-4 the
income was Rs. 88,200, of which the pilgrim tax contributed Rs. 50,000.
The town is well supplied with water from a reservoir, about a mile
south-west of the town, which was built by the municipality in 1874
at a cost of 2 lakhs. The Bhima has eleven ghdts or landings.