Inspirational Women – Sarojini Naidu

The Fifteen Inspirational Women that we have today is Sarojini Naidu, who was also known as Nightingale of India. She was a Social Activist and a Poet.

She was appointed the President of the Indian National Congress in 1925 and later became the Governor of the United Provinces in 1947, becoming the first woman to hold the office of Governor in the Dominion of India.

Naidu’s poetry includes both children’s poems and others written on more serious themes including patriotism, romance, and tragedy. Published in 1912, “In the Bazaars of Hyderabad” remains one of her most popular poems. 

Naidu joined the Indian independence movement in the wake of partition of Bengal in 1905. Between 1915 and 1918, Naidu travelled to different regions in India delivering lectures on social welfare, emancipation of women and nationalism. She also helped to establish the Women’s Indian Association (WIA) in 1917.

Later in 1917, Naidu also accompanied her colleague Annie Besant, who was the president of Home Rule League and Women’s Indian Association, to present the advocate universal suffrage in front of the Joint Select Committee in London, United Kingdom.

Naidu again went to London in 1919 as a part of the All India Home Rule League as a part of her continued efforts to advocate for freedom from the British rule. Upon return to India in 1920, she joined Gandhi’s Satyagraha Movement. Naidu said in her address, “In the battle for liberty, fear is one unforgivable treachery and despair, the one unforgivable sin.”

Naidu also presided over East African and Indian Congress’ 1929 session in South Africa.

Naidu was arrested, along with other Congress leaders including Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, and Madan Mohan Malaviya for participating in 1930 Salt March. The Indian National Congress decided to stay away from the First Round Table Conference that took place in London owing to the arrests.

Between 1915 and 1918, Naidu travelled to different regions in India delivering lectures on social welfare, emancipation of women and nationalism.

Later in 1917, Naidu also accompanied her colleague Annie Besant, who was the president of Home Rule League and Women’s Indian Association, to present the advocate universal suffrage in front of the Joint Select Committee in London, United Kingdom.She also helped to establish the Women’s Indian Association (WIA) in 1917.

Naidu again went to London in 1919 as a part of the All India Home Rule League as a part of her continued efforts to advocate for freedom from the British rule. Upon return to India in 1920, she joined Gandhi’s Satyagraha Movement. Naidu said in her address, “In the battle for liberty, fear is one unforgivable treachery and despair, the one unforgivable sin.”Sarojini Naidu plants a tree in Mehrauli, Delhi.

Sarojini was one of the major figures to have led the Civil Disobedience Movement and the Quit India Movement led by Mohandas Karmachanda Gandhi (Mahatma Gandhi) She faced repeated arrestings by the British authorities during the time and even spent over 21 months(1year 9months) in jail.

In 1931, however, Sarojini and other leaders of the Congress Party participated in the Second Round Table Conference headed by Viceroy Lord Irwin in the wake of the Gandhi-Irwin pact.

Naidu also presided over East African and Indian Congress’ 1929 session in South Africa.

Naidu was arrested, along with other Congress leaders including Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, and Madan Mohan Malaviya for participating in 1930 Salt March. The Indian National Congress decided to stay away from the First Round Table Conference that took place in London owing to the arrests.

In 1931, however, Sarojini and other leaders of the Congress Party participated in the Second Round Table Conference headed by Viceroy Lord Irwin in the wake of the Gandhi-Irwin pact.

Sarojini was one of the major figures to have led the Civil Disobedience Movement and the Quit India Movement led by Mohandas Karmachanda Gandhi (Mahatma Gandhi) She faced repeated arrestings by the British authorities during the time and even spent over 21 months(1year 9months) in jail.

Sarojini began writing at the age of 12. Her play, Maher Muneer, written in Persian, impressed the Nizam of Kingdom of Hyderabad.

In 1905, her first collection of poems, named The Golden Threshold was published.[8] The volume bore an introduction by Arthur Symons. Her poems were admired by prominent Indian politicians like Gopal Krishna Gokhale.

Naidu’s poem “In the Bazaars of Hyderabad” was published as a part of The Bird of Time with her other poems in 1912. “In the Bazaars of Hyderabad” was well received by critics, who variously noted Naidu’s visceral use of rich sensory images in her writing.

The Feather of The Dawn which contained poems written in 1927 by Naidu was edited and published posthumously in 1961 by her daughter Padmaja Naidu.Moreover her poem The Gift of India is also noteworthy for its patriotism and the actual environment of the 1915 India.

The Golden Threshold is an off-campus annex of University of Hyderabad. The building was the residence of Naidu’s father Aghornath Chattopadhyay, the first Principal of Hyderabad College. It was named after Naidu’s very first collection of poetry. Golden Threshold now houses Sarojini Naidu School of Arts & Communication of University of Hyderabad.

During the Chattopadhyay family’s residence, it was the center of many reformist ideas in Hyderabad, in areas ranging from marriage, education, women’s empowerment, literature, and nationalism. Specifically, the reformist ideas included more power for women in a time where politics in India, especially regional politics, was dominated by men. It also included ideas for involvement for women in the arts field. There were also many restrictions on marriage during this time period that persist to this day, such as inter-regional and inter-caste marriages. These ideas were progressive for the era, but brought a change in India in slow ways over time.

Some of her work

  • 1905: The Golden Threshold, published in the United Kingdom 
  • 1912: The Bird of Time: Songs of Life, Death & the Spring, published in London
  • 1917: The Broken Wing: Songs of Love, Death and the Spring, including “The Gift of India” (first read in public in 1915)
  • 1919: Muhammad Jinnah: An Ambassador of Unity
  • 1943: The Sceptred Flute: Songs of India, Allahabad: Kitabistan, posthumously published
  • 1961: The Feather of the Dawn, posthumously published, edited by her daughter, Padmaja Naidu
  • 1971:The Indian Weavers

Aishwarya Says:

I have always been against Glorifying Over Work and therefore, in the year 2021, I have decided to launch this campaign “Balancing Life”and talk about this wrong practice, that we have been following since last few years. I will be talking to and interviewing around 1 lakh people in the coming 2021 and publish their interview regarding their opinion on glamourising Over Work.

If you are interested in participating in the same, do let me know.

Do follow me on FacebookTwitter  Youtube and Instagram.

The copyright of this Article belongs exclusively to Ms. Aishwarya Sandeep. Reproduction of the same, without permission will amount to Copyright Infringement. Appropriate Legal Action under the Indian Laws will be taken.

If you would also like to contribute to my website, then do share your articles or poems at adv.aishwaryasandeep@gmail.com

We also have a Facebook Group Restarter Moms for Mothers or Women who would like to rejoin their careers post a career break or women who are enterpreneurs.

We are also running a series Inspirational Women from January 2021 to March 31,2021, featuring around 1000 stories about Indian Women, who changed the world. #choosetochallenge

You may also like to read:

Contractual Liability in Partnership

Landmark Case relating to Homosexuality

Freedom of Expression during Pandemic

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.