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Himanshu Roy

JWB Blogger

See How With Bamboo Sticks, Maharashtra’s Bhumata Brigade Women Have Started A Revolution

  • JWB Post
  •  August 30, 2016


There are injustices, discrimination, and patriarchy, but there is also Bhumata brigade. Yes, I am talking about the fiery Trupti Desai and her group of gritty women who are doing the unthinkable, challenging age-old religious diktats that reek of chauvinism.

In the heartland of Maharashtra, Desai and her team, the Bhumata brigade fights for women’s rights and gender equality.

It is quite an unlikely sight to see a long line of two-wheelers driven by Desai and the other women, slithering slowly through the road, inviting curious, furtive glances from the bystanders.

The fact that the women are carrying bamboo sticks might appear strange, but Desai feels that although one shouldn’t take the law in hand, there are exceptions when women have to be aggressive.

They confront eve teasers, molesters, and ultra-conservative priests. Yup, it is Desai because of whose tireless crusade, the Bombay High Court gave its landmark decision, allowing women to pray inside the inner sanctum of the Haji Ali Dargah.

This fight against harsh religious diktats started when a woman went up the platform of the famed Shani Shingnapur Temple and touched the deity.

The temple administration actually performed a ‘purification ritual’ to ensure that the deity was not made impure by the woman. It is this incident that made the Bhumata brigade see red and start a protracted struggle for freedom from such diktats.

And all hell broke loose with religious heads attacking Desai and the fellow activists from all quarters so much so that Desai even had to go to jail.

But as the high court order is there for everyone to see, Desai is not one to concede defeat. In a recent video made by the Blush Channel, we get a peek inside the life of Desai and the Bhumata brigade, who through their actions have shown the world that they are anything but quitters.

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