Google on Saturday celebrated the 155th birth anniversary of leading Bengali poet, social worker and the country's first woman to graduate with honours, Kamini Roy with a cool animated doodle. “Why should a woman be confined to home and denied her rightful place in society?” she asked in 1924.
Known for voicing and advocating women's rights, Kamini helped advance feminism in the Indian subcontinent. Born on October 12, 1864, in the village of Basanda, she joined Bethune School in 1883 and was one of the first girls to attend school in British India. She earned a bachelor of arts degree with Sanskrit honours from Bethune College of the University of Calcutta in 1886 and started teaching there in the same year.
"In college, she met another student, Abala Bose, who went on to be known for her social work in women's education and alleviating the condition of widows. Her friendship with Bose would inspire her interest in advocating for women's rights," Google said.
Hailing from a typical Bengali family, her father Chandi Charan Sen was a judge and a writer. By forming organisations to champion causes she believed in, she helped advance feminism in the Indian subcontinent. She also worked to help Bengali women win the right to vote in 1926. Kamini won several accolades including Jagattarini Gold Medal and was also made the vice-president of the Bangiya Sahitya Parishad in 1932-33. Kamini breathed her last on September 27, 1933, while she was staying in Hazaribagh with her family.
In 1894 she married Kedarnath Roy. She had two children, after which she retired from her writing profession. When asked why she had stopped writing she reportedly said, “My children are my living poems.” Kamini returned to writing poetry after the death of her husband in 1909 and her oldest son. For her literary accomplishments, Kamini Roy was awarded the Jagattarini medal by Calcutta University in 1929.
(With ANI inputs)