Remembering Savitribai Phule, One Of India’s First Feminists, On Her Death Anniversary

The Logical Indian Maharashtra

March 10th, 2017 / 11:20 AM

Savitribai Phule Death Anniversary

Women have now become active participants in all walks of life. They are not only homemakers now but are also influencing the course of social change in the community. But this position did not come quickly. They had to fight to reclaim their rights. It was not very long ago that women faced infanticide, sati, child marriage and other biased practices.

One woman defied all these obstacles. Savitri Bai Phule identified the grievances of women in India and fought the injustice against them.


The First Indian Feminist Savitribai Phule

Savitribai Phule was born into a family of farmers in Naigaon, Maharashtra. Since the practice of child marriage was prevalent in the 19th century, she was married off at the age of nine. Her husband who himself was a social activist taught her to read and write. After she was was literate, she participated in her husband’s in social reform movements, teaching young girls. She endured a lot of comments and abuses for her work and idea to educate young girls.

It was a period when mortality rate was high; many young girls became widows even before attaining puberty. The little girls were forced to shave their heads and wear a simple red sari and live a life of austerity. It would pain Savitri to see women leading a life like this. She gathered her courage and organised a strike against the barbers to persuade them to stop shaving heads of the young widows. Her husband was her support through this movement.

The condition of women worsened with time. Girls were exploited sexually and became objects of lust for men. These girls were abandoned by the men when they became pregnant. Some girls would commit suicide while few got an abortion due to fear of being ostracised from society. Moved by the plight of these women, Savitribai opened a care centre. “Balhatya Pratibandhak Giha” was started for pregnant rape victims to help them deliver children.

She and her husband also adopted a son who was born to a widow. Savitribai had challenged the questions of gender in isolation and also highlighted the issues of women.

Savitribai and her adopted son Yashwant also opened a clinic to treat those who were suffering from the bubonic plague. She served the patients wholeheartedly. She also contracted the disease while caring for the patients. Even with the disease weakening her body, her spirit remained vibrant. She continued helping other patients.

She died on 10 March 1897. Phule was one of the first contemporary Indian feminists.


Contributors

Edited by :

Share your thoughts..

Related Stories

Birth Anniversary Of Mysore’s ‘Rajarshi’ Krishnaraja Wadiyar; First To Introduce Compulsory Education For Children In India

The Best Of The Great – Remembering Sam Manekshaw On His Birth Anniversary

Remembering Chandra Shekhar Azad On His 87th Death Anniversary

Remembering Chandra Shekhar Azad On His 86th Death Anniversary

Rani Chennamma

Rani Chennamma: Remembering The Unsung Icon From Karnataka On Her Death Anniversary

The First Indian Feminist Savitribai Phule

Remembering The First Indian Feminist Savitribai Phule On Her Birth Anniversary

Latest on The Logical Indian

My Social Responsibility

These Two Friends Started Goa’s First Zero-Waste Store To Beat Plastic Pollution At Its Root

News

SC/ST Quota In Job Promotions: Supreme Court Refuses To Refer Case To Larger 7-Judge Bench

News

Public Has Right To Know; Supreme Court To Live Stream Court Proceedings

News

Delhi Ranked 6th In The List Of Fastest Growing, Best Performing Metro Cities In The World: Study

News

Aadhaar Not Needed For Opening Bank Accounts, SIM But Mandatory For PAN Card: SC Verdict

My Story

My Story: Now I Know Why My Father Insisted On Carrying Home Packed Food During Train Journeys

x

Stories that deserve attention, delivered to your inbox!

Handpicked, newsworthy stories which deserve the attention of a rational generation.