Bhave had won several national and international awards for her work. After completing her education, she started working with a social welfare organisation and also worked as a teacher at the Karve Institute of Social Sciences in Pune. Later, she also worked as a newsreader.
In 1985, Bhave made her first short film “Bai”, which was about a woman living in a slum and her survival against all odds. The film won several national awards. In 1995, Bhave and Sukthankar made their directorial debut with “Doghi”, which received the National Film Award. Her other notable works include “Devrai” (2004), “Gho Mala Asala Hawa”, “Ha Bharat Maza”, “Astu – So Be It”, “Samhita”, “Welcome Home”, “Vaastupurush”, “Dahavi Fa” and “Kaasav”, a National Award-winning film. “Kaasav” was also screened at the Mumbai Film Festival in 2016.
Bhave had also lent her voice as a narrator to Chaitanya Tamhane’s upcoming film The Disciple, which has been executively produced by Gravity director Alfonso Cuaron. Bhave had a daughter, who is also a writer. In April 2020, Bhave was admitted to Sahyadri Hospital in Pune for lung infection where she was under treatment for about 10 days. She was suffering from Interstitial lung disease. She died on the morning of 19 April 2021. At the time of her death, she was working on 3 films and their scripts