In the Hindu lunar calendar, Ekadashi is the eleventh day of the fortnight after a new moon or a full moon, and is considered auspicious for the worship of Lord Vishnu. The Ekadashi after the new moon in the Hindu month of Ashada is of special significance to the devotees of Lord Vitthal, a manifestation of Lord Vishnu. Tradition has it that two of the greatest devotees of the Lord from the state of Maharashtra, Sant Jnaneshwar and Sant Tukaram had set out on a pilgrimage from their respective places to the shrine of Lord Vitthala in Pandharpur and reached the Divine Abode in fifteen days time on this auspicious day of Ashadi Ekadashi. Following the tradition set by these great souls, devotees from the entire length and breadth of Maharashtra, set out for Pandharpur (the abode of Lord Vitthala), wearing basil beads and singing His glory on a pilgrimage to reach there in the stipulated period of fifteen days on this auspicious day to have Divine Darshan. These devotees are known as Varkaris and the pilgrimage is traditionally called Dindi Yatra.
In recent times, the holy festival of ‘Ashadi Ekadashi’ has seen multitudes from the states of Maharashtra and Goa make the pilgrimage to Prasanthi Nilayam to celebrate this important festival in the Divine Presence. Devotees from the states of Maharashtra and Goa commence their Dindi Yatra from the town of Dharmavaram (about 40 kilometres from Puttaparthy) on foot and reach Prasanthi Nilayam, on the morning of Ashadi Ekadashi to have the Darshan and blessings of Bhagawan. This is usually followed by a cultural programme presented by the Bal Vikas children of Maharashtra and Goa.