Today’s Google doodle is dedicated to one of India’s most well known social reformer and poet, Savitribai Phule. On her 186th birth anniversary, the colorful doodle dedicated to Phule shows her embracing and sheltering other women. The doodle also depicts a village school, which could be depicting Phule’s efforts to empower and educate women. Also Read - Google Workspace now available for everyone, including free Google account owners
Savitribai Phule was born on January 3, 1831 in Naigaon, Maharashtra. She was born into a family of wealthy farmers, and as was the tradition at the time, she was married off at the tender age of nine to Jyotirao Phule. She was however determined to continue studying after marriage, and was among the very few literate women of that era. Also Read - UEFA Euro 2020: Colourful Google Doodle kicks off European Football Championship
Along with her husband Jyotirao, Savitribai fought for the rights of the oppressed women in the largely patriarchal Maharashtra society. Both would continue fighting for women’s rights at the height of British rule in India. Also Read - Android 12 beta 2 rolling out: New privacy features, tweaked design and more
Savitribai opened a care centre for pregnant rape victims, and here she helped in delivering their babies. This centre was named Balhatya Pratibandhak Griha or infanticide prohibition house. She also founded the first women’s school at Bhide Wada in Pune in 1848. For her deeds, she came to be known as one of the first ‘modern Indian feminists’.
Besides this, the husband-wife duo also tirelessly worked towards abolishing Maharashtra’s cruel caste system. They dug a well at their house for untouchables to draw water from.
As a poet, Savitribai’s writings were themed around discrimination and encouraged everyone to get educated. Savitribai Phule died on March 10, 1897 while taking care of patients suffering from Bubonic Plague, during the third global epidemic.