A village named Shani Shignapur is situated approx. 35km from Ahmednagar District of Maharashtra. This holy shrine is dedicated to Lord Shanidev or Sri Shaneshwara. Among the nine planets, Shani is on the seventh place. It is believed that Lord Shanidev gives the result of good or bad deeds of people. People from all over the world visit Shani Shignapur temple to get the blessings of Lord Shanidev. An overwhelming idol of Lord Shanidev in black stone is presented in this holy temple. In Shani Shignapur temple, devotees don’t have to wait the priest to perform rituals or prayers, in fact, devotees can perform abhishek, pooja and other rituals by themselves. Lord Shanidev is said to bring happiness and sadness according to the Karma of people. One will be amazed by seeing that the houses of Shingnapur village have no door-locks or any kind of safety locks. It is believed by villagers that no crime can happen there because of the blessings of Lord Shanidev.
There are many stories related to Shri Shaneshwara which are popular among people. It is believed that the parents of Lord Shanidev were Suryadev and Sandna. Sandna and Suryadev had two sons Shri Shaneshwar and Dakshinadhipati Yama. Sandna created her clone because the harsh heat of Surya’s light was unbearable for her. Sandna named her clone as Sanvarna. Sandna asked her clone to live as a wife of Surya and also asked her to perform the duties of his wife. Sanvaran promised Sandna that she will not reveal the truth in any case. After that, Sandna left for her parent’s house. When her father came to know about her coming, he advised Sandna to go back to her husband. Sandna did not agree with her father so she transformed herself into a mare to reside in Himalayas. There she started penancing. Meanwhile, Sanvarna was performing all the duties as the wife of Surya. Sanvarna also had her own children from Surya. Surya was not at all aware from the truth of Sanvarna. It is believed that one day, Lord Shanidev was feeling very hungry and asked his mother (Sanvarna) for something to eat. Sanvarna told Lord Shanidev to wait for sometime because she first wanted to offer God. Lord Shanidev kept asking for food continuously and got frustrated. In his frustration, Lord Shanidev kicked his mother. Sanvarna got very angry and she cursed him that his leg would break. Lord Shanidev complained his father about the curse given by Sanvarna. Surya was very shocked by hearing this. Surya thought that a mother can never curse her child like this. Soon, he found the truth of Sanvarna and got to know that Sandna went to Himalayas. Then, Surya told to Lord Shanidev that Sanvarna is like his mother and curse given by her cannot go in vain. Surya promised Lord Shanidev that he will be worshipped by people. This is the reason for a lame leg of Lord Shanidev.
Shani Shignapur temple witnesses a huge crowd on Shani Amavashya and the Gudi Padava. You can feel the immense devotion at Shani Shignapur temple. One must visit this holy shrine to get the blessings from Lord Shanideva.