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Story Of Khandoba And Bani Or Banu

Khandoba, also known as Mallar or Malhari Martand Bhairava, is a powerful manifestation of Lord Shiva worshipped in Maharashtra and parts of Karnataka and Telangana. The story of Khandoba marrying Bani or Banu is very popular among devotees of Khandoba.

The love affair of Khandoba and Banai, foster daughter of a shepherd, is a subject of a number of folk poems in Maharashtra. It is believed that Banu was one of the seven daughters of Indra.

Young Banu once visited the Khandoba Temple in Jejuri and fell in love with Khandoba. She wrote a love letter to him using dark kajal from her eyes.

Khandoba too fell for her and became a shepherd and tended the sheep of foster father of Banu.

One day Khandoba killed the folk of sheep in his charge. He told a shocked Banu and her father that he will bring back the folk of sheep to life, if Banu married her. Father of Banu agreed.

After the marriage, the shepherd made her sit in front of him on his horse. As soon as she did so he appeared before her in his original form as Khandoba.