After years of struggle for breaking an age-old tradition that prohobited women’s entry into the sanctum sactorum of Shani Shingnapur temple in Maharashtra, Trupti Desai is the leading voice behind the historic decision of allowing women’s entry into temple. The Bhumta Brigade activist Trupti’s next stopover is now the Mahalakshmi temple.

On Friday evening, women made their historic entry into Shani Shingnapur temple.
On Friday evening, women made their historic entry into Shani Shingnapur temple.


After the petition of Narendra Bhai Dabholkar to debarred the women’s entry into temple, the young activist from Maharashtra, Trupti filed the petition for allowing women in Shani Shingnapur temple.

Her life journey

Desai is the founder and the president of the Bhumta Brigade, an activist group in Pune, decided to upend the status quo.

Trupti Desia the Bhumta Brigade activist.
Trupti Desia the Bhumta Brigade activist.

Amid the right-wing religious groups and orthodox ideology of residents of Shani Shingnapur temple who bitterly opposed her plans, Trupti was deterred in her way to eradicate this social taboo.

After the historic decision of court on case, Trupti Desai said the stir for Mahalakshmi temple would start on April 13 and thereafter her brigade will go to Trimbakeshwar temple in Nashik. “It’s been 3 months and after the women power has won, this is just the beginning.” she added.

On friday evening, escorted by the state police. Trupti Desai-led Bhumta Brigade cadres offered prayer at the santum sctorum in Shani Shingnapur temple in Maharashtra’s Ahmednagar district.

An impressive list of various media publications of Marathi, Hindi and English languages lined up outside her home to interview her when she had an audacious plan to enter a shrine that barred female worshippers.

What really pestered her?

The problem behind the whole outrage and struggle was the unjust norm of temple that a woman is not allowed to set foot on the open platform where the idol is installed. Men, however were allowed to do so for a princely fee of Rs. 11,111.

Know about her brigade?

Trupti has been a social activist ever since her days of SNDT College in Pune. Due to some family problems Trupti was forced to drop her school.

Three women who accompanied her initially in Brigade.
Three women who accompanied her initially in Brigade.

“Even then, I had the habit of going for meetings and andolans,” she said. “After college was over, I just continued with that.”

Desai attained her first success in 2009 when she exposed a cooperative bank’s frawd on its 35000 customers. Ajit Cooperative Bank was associated with then cabinet minester, Ajit Pawar. She even received myriad of death threats but she did not step down.

An year later, Trupti started the brigade with three women who accomapneid her to the first storming of Shani Shingnapur. The brigade now has 4000 members and 21 branches in Maharashtra . Although, the brigade is not officially on papers as it is not registered with the Charity Commissioner or other authority. But Trupti considers the brigade to be more of a movement than a trust.

Hope share attains success in her next stopover too 🙂 Get going girl!!