Activist Trupti Desai, who has said she has been receiving death and rape threats after she hailed the Supreme Court verdict on Sabarimala and declared her intention to visit the temple, has decided to seek police security.
“Since Friday, when I welcomed the Supreme Court verdict and announced my intention to visit Sabarimala, I have been getting threats to my life. The threats haven’t stopped. I fear for my security and have decided to seek police protection,” said Desai.
Desai, the chief of Bhumata Brigade, said she would seek police protection from city Police Commissioner K Venkatesham on Monday. The activist said she will soon reveal the date on which she and other members of the Bhumata Brigade would be travelling to Sabarimala, adding that she needed armed protection in Pune and also on her way to Kerala.
The Pune Malayali Federation has, meanwhile, asked her to wait till “sentiments cool down” before visiting the temple. “It is an age-old tradition at Sabarimala that women of menstruating age can’t enter the temple…Though the Supreme Court has allowed women to enter the temple, local devotees, which mainly include women, will not allow Desai to enter the temple. They are not happy with the verdict,” said Rajan Nair, president of the Pune Malayali Federation.
Nair said there were certain reasons why Desai should not visit Sabarimala. “Firstly, the sanctity of the temple should be maintained. Secondly, women from Ayyappa Seva Sangham are upset and would not allow her to enter the temple. Thirdly, the temple is located in a hilly area, in a jungle, there are safety issues,” he said.
PCMC corporator and a member of the Federation, Babu Nair, said, “It is a sentimental issue with devotees. They are upset…They are thinking of filing a review petition before the Supreme Court. Desai should wait till the issue is settled.”
Desai, who had successfully led the agitation for the entry of women into the inner sanctum of Shani Shingnapur temple in Mahararashtra in April 2016, said she had been getting nasty comments and death threats on her Facebook page since Friday.