Women freedom fighters of India encouraged and inspired many Indians to join and struggle for their national freedom. These women became role models for many generations in India.
We are all familiar with the names like Mahatma Gandhi, Bhagat Singh, Chandra Shekhar Azad and many other freedom fighters. They put their Indian nation beyond their lives.
However, there are other women freedom fighters of India, who are equally devoted and free-spirited as the above-mentioned people. These female activists had their huge investment in the freedom movement of India that encouraged lots of Indians to join the movement.
If we look through the pages of the history of India, we’ll find numerous female activists with exceptional bravery and intelligence. They walked shoulder to shoulder with men of that period.
In this article, you’ll find the list of women freedom fighters of India, whose life and struggle is a huge inspiration for everyone.
Women freedom fighters of India 1)Kasturba Gandhi
Kasturba Mohandas Gandhi, the wife of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, was a political activist struggling for civil rights and independence of India.
She accompanied her famous husband to all movements and even took his place when he was under arrest. It is noteworthy that during the protest against working circumstances for Indians in South Africa (1913), this brave woman was arrested and sentenced to three months in a hard labor prison.
Later, when Gandhi returned to India to support indigo planters, Kasturba accompanied him and taught Indians basic lessons, such as:
- and reading.
Overall, Kasturba played a crucial role in the backstage of Indian freedom struggle.
Women freedom fighters of India 2) Rani Lakshmi Bai
Rani Lakshmi Bai (Manikarnika) is one of those names that will stay in the history of India forever. Being the queen of Jhansi, she was the first women freedom fighter, who participated in the first rebellion of freedom in 1857.
When British forces wanted to take over the state of Jhansi, the courageous Lakshmibai announced to struggle for freedom instead to surrender.
She is the greatest embodiment of courage, leadership, and heroism. Even Sir Hugh Rose praised her bravery and noted that she is the most dangerous of all Indian leaders. We take dangerous as a praise here.
This prominent female warrior is a symbol of resistance for Indian nationalists. Manikarnika was born into a Maratha family at Varanasi. She was married to Raja Gangadhar Rao, the Maharaja of Jhansi. After her marriage, she changed her last name Manikarnika to Lakshmibai, in honor of the goddess Lakshmi.
Women freedom fighters of India 3) Madam Bhikaiji Cama
Bhikaiji Cama is one of the most prominent names in the Indian independence struggle. Indeed, she was one of the greatest women India ever witnessed.
Bhikaiji was not only philanthropist but also an active social worker. While providing aid to the others during the epidemic of bubonic plague (it was widespread in Mumbai in 1896), she got infected with the disease. Even though she was sent to Britain for her treatment, she fought for Indian Independence from abroad all her life.
She worked as secretary to Dadabhai Naoroji and supported the Indian Home Rule Society. While attending the International Socialist Conference in Stuttgart, Germany, she hoisted the Indian flag of the freedom struggle.
Furthermore, she made people aware of the aftermath of the starvation that had hit India and raised her voice for the human rights and equality in India. By the way, there are several streets and places named after her and there’s a commemorative stamp in her honor.
Women freedom fighters of India 4) Sarojini Naidu
Sarojini Naidu, also known as “The Nightingale of India”, was famous Indian female independence activist and poet. She served as the first governor of the United Provinces of Agra and Oudh, thus becoming the first woman to become the governor of an Indian state.
In 1925 Sarojini became the second woman to become the president of the Indian National Congress.
In the years of 1915 to 1918, she traveled to different parts of India and gave lectures on women’s empowerment, social welfare, and nationalism.
She was one of the initiators of the Women’s Indian Association (WIA). Notably, Sarojini Naidu played a leading role during the Civil Disobedience Movement but unfortunately, was jailed along with Gandhi and other leaders.
She was also arrested during the “Quit India” movement. This outstanding woman died in 1949 because of a heart attack while working in her office in Lucknow.
Women freedom fighters of India 5) Sucheta Kriplani
Next one in our list of women freedom fighters of India is Sucheta Kriplani. She is one of the most important names in the struggle for freedom and was one of the closest female activists with Mahatma Gandhi during Partition riots of India.
Additionally, she played a significant role in politics by joining Indian National Congress. Sucheta was elected as a member of the drafting committee of Constituent assembly during the formation of the constitution of the country.
By the way, after independence, she was elected as the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh state.
Women freedom fighters of India 6) Aruna Asaf Ali
Aruna Asaf Ali is celebrated and popular Indian freedom fighter who actively participated in public processions during Salt Satyagraha. She was also an active member of Indian National Congress.
Even though she was imprisoned because of her struggle activities, prison walls did not stop her and she continued with her protests from prison.
Her struggle resulted in the improved conditions of prisoners in Tihar Jail. Undoubtedly, this act became remarkable in the history of freedom struggle.
In 1942, she hosted the Indian National Congress flag in Bombay during the Quit India Movement. It’s noteworthy that Ali was awarded the highest civilian award, Bharat Ratna, for her heroic activities. She also received the title of “Grand old Lady of India” during her later years.
Women freedom fighters of India 7) Kamala Nehru
“The Delhi Beauty”, Kamala Nehru was the wife of Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of India, whose contribution to Indian freedom struggle can never be forgotten.
Notably, in 1921, during the Non-Cooperation Movement in Allahabad, she organized groups of women and protested against shops of liquor and foreign cloth.
Being the wife of Nehru Ji, she often delivered speeches when he failed to appear. By the way, she was the mother of Indira Gandhi. Once, when her husband was arrested to prevent him delivering a “seditious” public speech, she took his place to read it out.
Soon British realized the popularity she had among women in India. Considering her a threat, they arrested her for the involvement in Independence struggle activities.
Women freedom fighters of India 8) Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit
India diplomat and politician, the sister of Jawaharlal Nehru, Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit is the last brave woman of our list. She played an important role in Indian politics.
In 1937 she served as the minister of local self-government and public health, thus becoming the first women to become a cabinet minister. Furthermore, Lakshmi is well known for her political and diplomatic role during the freedom struggle.
Noteworthy is that she was the first woman ambassador in the world who attained the position in three countries: Moscow, Washington, and London.
She was also the first woman president of United Nations General Assembly. Her two writings, ”The Evolution of India” and ”The Scope of Happiness: A Personal Memoir” are very popular in India.
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