Search engine giant Google honoured India’s 19th Century social reformer Savitribai Phule on the occasion of her 186th birth anniversary (3 January 2017) by dedicating a doodle on its webpage.
The ‘doodle’ had a narration by New Delhi-based NGO Zubaan, with colourful paintings by Malvika Asher on the different historical aspects of Savitribai’s life.
It showed a group of demure women assembled outside what could be a school for education in a skyblue starry background which also doubles as her blouse.
About Savitribai Phule
- Savitribai was among the country’s first women to speak up for the rights of women. She was the first woman teacher of the first women’s school in India and also a first pioneer in modern Marathi poetry.
- Born as Savitribai K. Patil on January 3, 1831 into a family of farmers. She was married at the age of nine to the 13-year old Jyotirao Phule.
- She was home taught to read and write by her husband. Later the couple founded India’s first school for girls and women in Bhidewada, Pune (Maharashtra).
- It started with just nine girls from different castes enrolled as students – but it became a historic step when female education was considered taboo in the orthodox Indian society prevalent then.
- The school was started with just 9 girls from different castes. But it was considered as historic step when female education was considered taboo in the orthodox Indian society prevalent then.
- During the British rule in India, the Phule couple had launched a crusade against social discrimination based on caste and gender, and also had sparked the flame for women’s equal rights.
- During this highly patriarchal and orthodox Indian society when women had no say in anything, Savitribai’s courageous campaign covered social issues such as child marriages, child widows, practice of ‘Sati’, women education and fighting for equal rights for all women.
- Even after death of Jyotirao Phule in 1890, she carried on legacy of his Satyashodhak. She died while serving people suffering from bubonic plague in Maharashtra in 1897.
- As a tribute to her sheer courage and pioneering efforts in field of women education, social reform and gender equality Maharashtra government had renamed Pune University as Savitribai Phule University. India Post also had released a stamp in honour of Savitribai on March 10, 1998.