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Shri Dhananjoy Pandit
"Dhananjoy Pandit was a very rare soul. Nityananda Prabhu was always present in his heart." [C.B.Antya 5.733]
Amongst the twelve Gopals, he was the sakha, Basudam, in Braja lila.
His Shripat is at Sitalgram, Mangal Kot Thana, Barddhaman district. There is a railway station at Kaichor on the metre gauge line from Katwa to Barddhaman. If one gets down at Kaichor, then it is about a twenty minute walk to the village of Sitalgram. Just next to the temple of Shri Shri Shri Gauranga Gandharbika Gopinath is a Tulasi Mancha which is said to be the Samadhi of Dhananjoy Pandit.
He was present during Mahaprabhu's sankirtana pastimes in Nabadwip.
There are two different opinions regarding his birthplace. One is that he originally hailed from Jargram in the district of Cattagram and his father and mother were Shripati Bandyopadhyay and Kalindi Debi. According to the author of Shri Gauranga Madhuri, he was born from Adideb Bacaspati and Dayamayi debi in the village of Siyanmuluk which is near Bolpur in the District of Birbhum.
As a small child he used to offer his full dandabats to Shrimati Tulasi debi three times a day. At a young age he was married to one Haripriya debi but left the bonds of family life after a short time. He then set out to tour the holy places for which purpose his wealthy father sent along with him a considerable amount of money to be used for his travelling expenses. When he met Mahaprabhu however, he surrendered all of that wealth and after taking with him only a water pot, he set out on his way.
vilasi vairagi bando pandit dhananjoy |
sarvasva prabhure diya bhand hate loy ||
I adore Dhananjoy Pandit who, in surrendering everything to Prabhu, renounced a life of luxury, taking with him only a (begging) bowl.
On his way to Brindaban he stayed at Sancra Pancra for some time and therefore this place has become known as Dhananjoy Pat. On his return from Brindaban he resided at Jalandigram, (nine miles from Loknagar in Barddhaman dist.), where he established the worship of Shri Shri RadhaGovinda. His younger brother, Sanjoy, resided at Jalandigram and his descendants are still engaged in the worship of the Deities there. The son of Sanjoy was Shri Ram Kanai Thakur. Sanjoy also has a Shripat at Mulukgram (near Bolpur) in the Birbhum dist.
The present sevaits of the temple at Sitalgram are the descendants of a disciple of Dhananjoy Pandit, Jivan Krishna, who also installed the Syam Sundor Deity, Who is now in the house of Gopal Ray Caudhuri of the same village.
According to legend, many atheists and even robbers who resided at Sitalgram, became devotees by the influence of Shri Dhananjoy Pandit.
Dhananjoy Pandit's disappearance is on the eighth day of the bright fortnight in the month of Karttik.