Ramabai Ranade
Women right activists in early 20th century
Ramabai Ranade
Ramabai Ranade was an Indian active social worker and one of the first women's rights activists in the 19th century. She was born in Kurlekar family in 1862. At the age of 11, she was married to Justice Mahadev Govind Ranade, who was a distinguished Indian scholar, social reformer at that time.
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  • 1924
    Age 62
    Died in 1924.
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  • 1915
    Age 53
    In 1915 the Pune Seva Sadan was registered as a society under her guidance, the society expanded its old educational departments and also started new ones.
    More Details Hide Details It developed a Women's Training College, three hostels, one of them for Medical students and other for probationer nurses. In 1924, when Smt. Ranade died, the Pune Seva Sadan was training more than one thousand women in different departments. It was largely owing to Smt. Ranade's initiatives, guidance and exertions that Seva Sadan found a footing and grew so rapidly in spite of prevailing prejudices. The last two outstanding contribution which Smt. Ranade made were – the organisation of agitation for extending compulsory and pre-primary education to girls; and secondly organisation of Women's Suffrage Movement in Bombay presidency in 1921–22. The singular position, which Smt. Ranade assumed at the end of her life deserved Mahatma Gandhi's tribute to her as quoted: "The death of Ramabai Ranade is a great national loss. She was the embodiment of all that a Hindu widow could be. She was a true friend and helpmate of her illustrious husband in his lifetime". "After his death she chose her husband's reform activities as her life's aim. Justice Ranade was a reformer and deeply concerned about the uplifting of Indian womanhood. Ramabai put her heart and soul into Seva Sadan. She devoted her whole energy to it. The result is that Seva Sadan has become an institution with no second of its kind throughout India."
  • 1904
    Age 42
    In 1904 when Ramakrishna Gopal Bhandarkar, Shri.Bhajekar and other tyytuukykyy6i India Women Conference they approached Shrimati Ranade for her co-operation, lead and support.
    More Details Hide Details The first session of the conference was held under the Presidency of Smt. Ranade in December 1904, at Bombay. In 1908 Shri. B. M. Malbari and Shri. Dayaram Gidumal, came across with the idea of founding home for women and training Indian women to be "sevikas". They then turned to Smt. Ranade, the President of the first All-India Women Conference for her guidance and help for starting a Society and thus Seva Sadan (Bombay) came into being.
  • 1901
    Age 39
    Ramabai made her entry into public in the 1870s, but it was after Justice Ranade's death in 1901 that she wholly identified herself with the cause of women in India.
    More Details Hide Details She became a regular visitor to the Central Prison, especially the women's wing, to kindle self-esteem amongst prison inmates. She paid her visit to boys in the reformatory school, spoke to them and distributed sweets to them on festive occasions. She regularly visited patients in local hospitals, distributing fruits, flowers and books. She also went out to Gujarat and Kathiawar in 1913 to organise relief for famine-stricken people. Even in the final years of her life,she went to Alandi at the time of Ashadhi and Kartiki fairs, with volunteers from the Seva Sadan, to render help to women pilgrims visiting the shrine of Jñāneśvar. In taking up this activity,she laid foundations for a new type of social service for women.
  • 1893
    Age 31
    From 1893 to 1901 Ramabai was at the peak of her popularity in her social activities.
    More Details Hide Details She established the Hindu Ladies Social and Literary Club in Bombay and started a number of classes to train women in languages, general knowledge, tailoring and handwork. The later half of her life was tragic as it was shadowed by the death of her husband. She left Bombay and came to Pune and stayed at their old ancestral house near Phule Market. For one year, she led an isolated life. Finally, she came out of her self-imposed isolation to organise the first Bharat Mahila Parishad in Bombay. Ramabai lived 24 years after her husband's death – a life full of activity for social awakening, redressal of grievances and established social institutions like Seva Sadan for rehabilitation of distressed women. Ramabai vigorously worked for the next 25 years for women's education, legal rights, equal status, and general awakening. She encouraged them to enter the nursing profession. At that time, this profession was not looked up on as service-oriented and was so considered forbidden for women. To encourage women to come forward, she always asserted, "Don't we nurse our father or brother when he falls ill? All male patients are our brothers and nursing them is our sacred duty. Thus more and more women came forward to learn nursing." Ramabai's pioneering work in the field of nursing through Seva Sadan deserves special praise. The first Indian nurse was the product of Seva Sadan and Ramabai took great pain to win orthodox opinion in favour of nursing as a career for women and to encourage young girls and widows to join the nursing course in Seva Sadan.
  • 1873
    Age 11
    In 1873, she was married to Justice Mahadev Govind Ranade, a pioneer of India's social reform movement.
    More Details Hide Details He devoted his time to educate her in face of opposition of the women in the house and helped her to become an ideal wife and a worthy helpmate in social and educational reform. With his strong support and sharing his visionary path, Ramabai spent all her life making women self-reliant and economically independent. She was barely 11 years old when she was married to Mahadev Govind Ranade, who was a scholar, idealist and a revolutionary social activist. Ramabai was illiterate when she was married as she lived in a time when considered a sin for a girl to read or write. On the contrary, her husband, addressed as the "Prince of Graduates", was a graduate of Bombay University with first class honours. He not only worked as the Professor of English and Economics at the Elphinstone College in Bombay, but was also as an oriental translator and a social reformer. He worked rigorously against evils that existed in the society. He was against untouchability, child marriage and Sati. He took over the Sarvajanik Sabha and led a number of movements for social development. He had won the praise of the whole of Maharashtra by the time he was in his early thirties. His overarching thinking, dynamic vision, passionate and devoted social commitment strongly inspired Ramabai and illuminated her path for future social work.
  • 1863
    Age 1
    She was born in Kurlekar family in 1863.
    More Details Hide Details At the age of 11, she was married to Justice Mahadev Govind Ranade, who was a distinguished Indian scholar and social reformer. In that era of social inequality, women were not allowed to go to school and become literate, Ramabai, soon after her marriage, started to learn reading and writing with strong support and encouragement from Mahadev Govind Ranade. Starting with her native language Marathi, Ramabai strove hard to master English and Bengali. Inspired by her husband, Ramabai started 'Hindu Ladies Social Club' in Mumbai to develop public speaking among women. Ramabai was also a founder and President of 'Seva Sadan Society' in Pune. Ramabai devoted her life to the improvement of women's lives. Ramabai Ranade opened famous girls' school in Pune "Hujurpaga". Ramabai Ranade was a pioneer of the modern women's movement in India and outside. She was the founder and president of the "Seva Sadan", which is the most successful of all Indian women's institution and is attended by thousands of women. The immense popularity of the institution was due to the fact that it was under Ramabai's close personal supervision. Shetfyjuhyit
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