Known to pioneer women’s labor movement in India, Anasuya Sarabhai is the lady who founded the Ahmedabad Textile Labour Association. Today Google has dedicated a special doodle to mark and honor her 132nd birthday.
She founded Ahmedabad Textile Labour Association (Majadoor Mahajan Sangh), India’s oldest union for textile workers in 1920. Anasuya was born in Ahmedabad on 11 November 1885 into industrialist Sarabhai family. She was an orphan at the age of nine when both her parents died and she was taken care of by her brother Ambalal Sarabhai.
Anusaya was forced into marriage at the age of 13, before escaping to England in 1912 to get a degree in medical science. However, she then switched to London School of Economics. In England, Anasuya was deeply influenced by the Fabian Society and Suffragette movement. She had become a socialist on her return to India. In India, she worked for women and poor, and opened a school for them. She invited Mahatma Gandhi to Ahmedabad and organized textile workers in 1914.
Anasuya also played a major role in the Kheda Satyagraha, and was also one of the first signatories of the ‘Satyagraha Pledge’ created by Mahatma Gandhi. Google’s blog post said that the doodle was created by Maria Qamar, a Pakistani-Canadian artist and author of the book Trust No Aunty. ALSO READ: Facebook introduces Google Doodle-like News Feed messages
Maria Qamar said, “Anasuya’s dedication to justice and equality is something I can relate to”. While making the doodle she took inspiration from the Indian textile industry. “I portrayed delicate fabrics and traditional patterns found in our homes and our closets,” she explained. Affectionately addressed by the moniker ‘Motaben’, she died in 1972.