After her successful right-to-pray campaign centred around the Shani Shingnapur and Trimbakeshwar temples in Maharashtra, Trupti Desai of the Bhumata Ranragini Brigade was all set to enter the Haji Ali dargah in Mumbai, when she was stopped short.
Refusing to even let her out of her car, angry crowd of protesters surrounded her vehicle, banging the car's doors and windows, shouting, "Wapas jao, wapas jao (Go back)."
According to Mumbai Mirror, the cops, who were posted there to stop from any situation getting out of hand, advised her not to get out of the car and go back.
Desai also said that she had received an anonymous call from a person present at the dargah that they had kept a bounty of ₹1,00,000 to kill her if she went back there.
Later, Desai started a march to the Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis' bungalow to meet him.
But there too, Desai and the protestors were stopped by the police as they informed her that she needed an appointment to meet the chief minister.
"Police have stopped us on our way to the CM's residence. They are asking us to first take an appointment with the CM for a meeting," she told ANI. "We were attacked today and there is a threat to our life, even then if we have been asked to take an appointment to meet the CM, then in what type of democracy we are living in?"
"Whether the Chief Minister meets us or not, we will stage a sit-in at his residence till he calls us. Is this the 'good days' for women of which the BJP keeps on talking," she said.
Earlier this year, the Haji Ali Dargah Trust had defended its ban on women, saying that it was a "grievous sin" as per Islam for women to be in close proximity of the grave of a male Muslim saint.
"The issue is unnecessarily blown out of proportion," Rizwan Merchant, a trustee of the dargah had said. "Our sisters are not prohibited or stopped from visiting the Dargah. There is a separate corridor and between the corridor and the Dargah, there is a line of those offertory boxes where devotees come and offer what is required to be offered. Behind that particular portion, an area of nearly 150-200 square-feet has been demarcated only for our sisters."
But Desai, though furious, is in no hurry.
"Today is only the first day of our movement, and we'll carry it forward till the point women are allowed and offer prayers at the dargah. We are not acting in haste. The matter is subjudice since 2012. We are demanding equal rights to the women," she said.
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