Remembering women trailblazers of Ahmedabad this International Women's Day!

Remembering women trailblazers of Ahmedabad this International Women's Day!

This International Women's Day, let us celebrate the women who have shaped our city and pioneered revolutions.

Amy Tenney beautifully articulates, "The world needs strong women. Women who will lift and build others, who will love and be loved. Women who live bravely, both tender and fierce."

For any city or society to thrive, it must be led by its women. Ahmedabad, steeped in the legacies of freedom fighters, activists, industrialists, and artists, bears witness to remarkable women breaking norms and effecting transformative change.

On the occasion of International Women's Day, let us take a moment to acknowledge the indomitable women of our city. They haven't merely shattered barriers; they have engraved an enduring mark on Ahmedabad's history. From spearheading movements for freedom to crafting artistic legacies, these women serve as guiding lights of change, leaving an inspirational legacy for generations to come.

Anasuya Sarabhai

Fondly known as 'Motaben,' Anasuya Sarabhai defied the conventions of her time and became India's first woman trade union leader. Born into privilege, she dedicated her life to championing the causes of labor and women's rights.

Establishing the Ahmedabad Textile Labour Association in 1920, Motaben became a torchbearer for workers' rights and better working conditions, leaving an enduring impact on Ahmedabad's history.

Ela Bhatt

Rajesh Vora/Dinodia Photo

Born in 1933, Ela Bhatt is a renowned Indian social activist and the founder of the Self-Employed Women's Association (SEWA). Her contributions have positively impacted the socio-economic landscape of Ahmedabad and beyond. Bhatt's establishment of SEWA in 1972 has brought about a transformative effect on the lives of numerous women engaged in various informal sectors in Ahmedabad.

By providing a platform for these women to organize, access financial resources, and advocate for their rights, Bhatt has played a crucial role in empowering marginalized communities.

Harkunvar Sethani

Harkunvar Sethani, the wife of Sheth Hutheesing, was a woman of extraordinary vision and determination. Recognized for her outstanding contributions to society, she earned the prestigious title of "Nek Sakhavati Bahadur" from the British Government.

Following the untimely demise of her husband, Harkunvar Sethani took it upon herself to complete the Hutheesing Jain Temple. However, her contributions didn't end there. She was a fervent advocate for women's education and empowerment at a time when such initiatives were groundbreaking. In 1855, she founded a girls' school in Ahmedabad.

Mrinalini Sarabhai and Mallika Sarabhai

Mrinalini Sarabhai
Mrinalini Sarabhai

The wife of Vikram Sarabhai, Mrinalini, was a renowned classical dancer, choreographer, teacher, author, and environmentalist. In 1949, she founded the Darpana Academy in Ahmedabad and thus created a space for the budding artists of the city.

Mrinalini's daughter, Mallika Sarabhai, is an equally impactful figure. Mallika's multifaceted contributions to Ahmedabad have been both artistic and activist. As a dancer, she has elevated the city's cultural scene, while her activism has addressed issues of social justice and women's rights.

Anandiben Patel

Anandiben Patel has been a trailblazer in Indian politics, serving as the first woman Chief Minister of Gujarat. Her tenure witnessed significant strides in women's empowerment, education, and infrastructural development. Patel's leadership left an indelible mark on the political landscape of Gujarat, and her commitment to progress continues to inspire aspiring leaders.

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