Google Doodle celebrates legacy of India's first woman legislator, Muthulakshmi Reddi
The illustration by a Bangalore-based artist Archana Sreenivasan features Reddi as a determined and strong lady
New Delhi: Celebrating the Indian educator, lawmaker, surgeon, reformer and country's first female legislator, Google on Tuesday paid a tribute to Muthulakshmi Reddi on her 133rd birth anniversary with a doodle boasting of her legacy.
The illustration by a Bangalore-based artist Archana Sreenivasan features Reddi as a determined and strong lady.
Google in its note on Reddi, described her as the "first female student admitted to prestigious Indian institutions, the first woman to work as a surgeon in a government hospital, and the first female legislator in the history of British India."
Born to Narayanaswami Iyer, principal of the Maharaja College in Pudukkottai, Tamil Nadu in 1886, Reddi completed higher education following which she joined the Madras Medical College in 1907. And in 1912, she became one of the first woman doctors in the country.
After a successful medical career, Reddi decided to join the Madras Legislative Council in 1926, and became the first woman legislator of India. Following her stint, Reddi fought for raising the legal age of marriage from 16 to 21. She also battled against girls' exploitation. In another move, she abolished the Devadasi system and shut down brothels by passing the Immoral Traffic Control Act.
However, her legislature was short-lived as she resigned in 1930 following a protest which started after the imprisonment of Mahatma Gandhi.
She was a staunch supporter of Gandhian ideology and worked for the upliftment of women and fought for gender equality. She also supported Gandhi's efforts for India's independence.
Reddi is also credited with the inauguration of a hospital named Adayar Cancer Institute in 1954. She opened the hospital after losing her sister to cancer.
Today, her cancer institute is one of the most respected oncology centers in the world and treats around 80,000 patients annually.
Her dedicated efforts in varying fields even had the leaders of that time include her name in the first flag of independent India hoisted at Red Fort in 1947.
In order to mark her contribution and undying service to the country, she was bestowed with the Padma Bhushan by the Government of India.
Muthulakshmi has also authored a book titled 'My Experience as a Legislator'. She passed away at 82 in 1968.
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