High drama was witnessed at the Shani Shingnapur temple on Sunday when four women from Pune made an attempt to climb on to the platform where the Shani shrine has been installed without a roof. The women who climbed a few stairs were stopped by the security guards. The temple is located in Ahmednagar district.
Assistant police inspector Prashant Mandale said the incident occurred at around 2.30 pm on Sunday. “The four women tried to climb on to the platform to offer puja but were prevented from doing so by the security guards. The women have lodged a complaint against the security guards for pushing them behind,” said Mandale.
Asked as to whether the women have lodged a complaint against the security guards, Mandale said, “Yes, they have…but I will use my discretionary powers as to what action is to be taken in the matter.” Mandale said it has not been decided whether the women will be arested or not.
He, however, denied the speculations that villagers had filed a complaint against the four women. “Neither the villagers nor the women have filed any complaint against each other. The television channels are reporting wrong news. It is our earnest appeal to everybody not to spread any rumours,” he said.
Trupati Desai, one of the women, who tried to climb on to the platform said, “Around 2.30 pm we entered the temple and wanted to offer puja at the shrine. However, security guards did not all us to go near the shrine. They pushed us down from the stairs..therefore we have lodged a complaint against the security guards,” she said.
Priyanka Jagtap, another woman from Pune, said they came all the way to offer worship to Shani, but were not allowed to do so by the temple security guards. “No, nobody threatened us, we were only pushed back,” she said. The women are apparently associated with Bhumata Trust and residents of Katraj area.
The temple trustees said that nobody is allowed to climb the platform. “Neither men nor women are allowed to offer worship by directly landing on to the platform where garlands and oil are offered,” said Swapanrao Bankar, a trustee.