If you are driving from Jodhpur to Pali, you can’t miss visiting a temple on your way, where devotees gather to worship an Enfield Bullet motorbike.
In this temple, that lies in a village called Bandayi (about 40 km from Jodhpur), there’s no idol to worship. Here, people bow their heads in front of a bike which they believe have supernatural powers.
“I have come to this place many times. Whenever I cross this temple I get down to take blessing from ‘Om Banna’ to have a safe journey ahead,” said Chandresh Vyas.
‘Om Banna’ was a local youth of village Bandayi who died in a road accident. His spirit is believed to protect other drivers and prevent them from meeting the same fate. Locals built this temple about 26 years back when some of them claimed seeing the ghost of ‘Om Banna’ – a bike without a rider.
“Soon after the accident, police took this bike to the police station , but it returned by itself. Thereafter an officer took the bike with him to Punjab, and even this time it returned by itself. Since then this spot – where Om Banna and two of his friends died – has become holy for the locals,” said Bhagur Singh, a temple pandit.
Today, at this temple you will see an old Bullet bike placed on a pedestal with devotees offering agarbattis and flowers to it. People come and pray here for prosperity and well-being, as they do in any other temple.
“Few years ago, I was in need of Rs 20,000. While driving on the highway, I stopped , got out of my car and prayed. To my surprise, a man with sparkling eyes offered me the amount and said I could return it later,” narrated Gursharan Singh.
“Last year when I had come to the same place to return the amount, I was told that he had died two decades back. I was shocked, but then I realized he was an incarnation of God. Since then I come to this place every moonless night to pay may gratitude to ‘Om Banna,’” Gursharan added.
People here even worship the tree, under which the bike had collapsed, and tie knots making wishes.
The Enfield Bullet now is caged in a glass box with its front open and decorated.