Everybody or nobody: Sri Sri's formula in Shani temple row

India Art of Living Sri Sri Ravi Shankar | AP

Spiritual leader Sri Sri Ravi Shankar on Sunday held separate meetings with the trustees of the Shani Shingnapur temple and Bhoomata Brigade leader Trupti Desai. The Art of Living founder has put forward a solution formula to break the impasse on the 'gender bias' at the temple by proposing the 'Tirupati Balaji' darshan model.

What is 'Tirupati Balaji' darshan model?

This model keeps both men and women away from inner sanctum. No one will step on the sacred chabutara and all will have darshan of the deity from a distance of three feet. "It is not that you do not get blessings of God if you have a darshan from some distance," said Ravi Shankar.

Activists wait CM's decision

However, the women activists do not seem satisfied with the formula, though they didn't outrightly reject it. Trupti Desai, who has been spearheading the agitation, said: "If both men and women are to be disallowed to have darshan by stepping on the chabutara in future, then activists of Bhoomata Brigade should have an opportunity to perform the last Pooja at the sacred platform in the presence of Sri Sri and Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis."

She added that she would meet the chief minister next week.

Shani temple hit headlines after around 400 women volunteers led by Desai tried to storm the the temple on January 26, protesting against the traditional ban on women at the sacred 'chabutara'. The protesters were stopped by police and temple authorities.

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