Women activists today slammed the tradition of prohibiting entry to the fairer sex at a famous Shani shrine in Ahmednagar district and the “purification rituals” which were performed by villagers after a woman recently entered there. On Saturday, the age-old practice of prohibiting women from offering prayers at the shrine located in ShaniShingnapur village was “breached” when a woman climbed the security barricade to the ‘chauthara’ (platform) where the idol is installed and offered prayers, before disappearing in the crowd. Yesterday, the villagers had performed a ‘dudh abhishek’ (milk purification) of the idol and observed a ‘bandh’ in the morning to protest the incident. Startled, the temple committee also swung into action today and suspen ded seven security personnel.
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