If women today can assert their rights of consent, it is due to Rukhmabai Raut. Google India today paid homage to Rukhmabai, the first Indian woman to practice medicine in ancient India, with a doodle. Anandibai Joshi was the initial Indian female doctor; Rukhmabai became the first practising female doctor in ancient India. Her heritage is well-stocked with even more revolutionary strides. Read on, some interesting facts about the work and life of Rukhmabai.
She was a victim of early marriage: Born in Bombay to Jayantibai and Janardhan Pandurang, she later went on to live with her stepfather. However, at the age of 11, Rukhmabai was married off to a 19-year-old Dadaji Bhikaji.
Rukhmabai refused to live with her spouse: Rukhmabai was the scion to a lofty inheritance, after her mother’s death. Dadaji decided to get in touch with Rukhmabai with the desire to claim her wealth. However, she did not consider their marriage legal and continued to live with her stepfather at the same time continuing her studies.
She became an unidentified journalist: She wrote a series of articles, with the title ‘A Hindu Lady’, highlighting the dilemma of women in the context of child marriage and the restrictions kept on their life after becoming a widow. At that every tabloid was critical about her decisions, this series came to be much popular and later it was discovered that she was the author.
She changed an age-old law in Britain: The story of this verdict travelled far and wide and came to British attention. It finally contributed to the passage of the Age of Consent Act, 1891, which declared child marriage to be an illegal act.
Later, Rukhmabai fulfilled her dream of becoming a physician. Dr Edith Pechey, supported Rukhamabai to acquire her degree in medicine from the London School of Medicine for Women. She joined a hospital in Surat, after returning to India in 1894, where she served as the chief for approximately 35 years.
Her story is dedicated to all those women who are not afraid to stand up for everything they believe in.
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