Muthulakshmi Reddi Google Doodle: Google on Tuesday celebrated the 133rd birth anniversary of Muthulakshmi Reddi, who was among India’s first women legislators. Reddi, born on this day in 1883 in Tamil Nadu, was an educator, lawmaker, surgeon and social reformer.
Reddi holds many firsts to her name. She was the first female student admitted to the Madras Medical College and the first woman to work as a surgeon in a government hospital. She is among the first female legislators in British India.
Reddi, who resisted marriage, studied in Maharaja College before being enrolled in Madras Medical College. She later, however, gave up her medical practice to join the Madras Legislative Council. She fought for women’s rights; she wanted to raise the legal age of marriage, and end exploitation of girls.
In 1914, Reddi married Sundara Reddy, also a doctor.
Reddi is also remembered for launching the Adyar Cancer Institute in 1954 after losing a sister to cancer. The institute remains one of the most respected oncology centres in the world. It reportedly treats around 80,000 patients annually.
In 1956, Reddi was awarded the Padma Bhushan by the Government of India.
“Constantly breaking down barriers throughout her life, Reddi was a trailblazer who devoted herself to public health and the battle against gender inequality, transforming the lives of countless people—especially young girls,” writes Google, in its tribute.
Today’s doodle was illustrated by Bengaluru-based artist Archana Sreenivasan.