Kolkata, Jul 30: Famous search engine Google on Tuesday remembered the educator, lawmaker, surgeon, social reformer and the founder of ‘Adyar Cancer Institute’ Muthulakshmi Reddy on her 133rd birthday with a doodle.Today’s Doodle, illustrated by Bangalore-based guest artist Archana Sreenivasan, celebrates the educator, lawmaker, surgeon, and reformer Muthulakshmi Reddy. Constantly breaking down barriers throughout her life, Reddy was a trailblazer who devoted herself to public health and the battle against gender inequality, transforming the lives of countless people—especially young girls.
Born on this day in 1886 in the southern state of Tamil Nadu, Reddy became the first female student admitted to prestigious Indian institutions, the first woman to work as a surgeon in a government hospital, and the first female legislator in the history of British India.As a young girl, Reddy resisted her parents’ plan for an early arranged marriage, convincing them she deserved an education.After passing her exams, she attended Maharaja College, formerly an all-boys school.
Despite threats of students pulling out from the school, she won a scholarship, graduated with honours, and went on to be the first female student at Madras Medical College. Reddy later gave up her medical practice to join the Madras Legislative Council, where she worked to raise the legal age of marriage and combated exploitation of girls.In 1914, she married a doctor named Sundara Reddy on the understanding that he treats her as an equal.
Working for the upliftment of women and battling gender inequality, she supported Gandhi’s efforts for Indian independence. After losing a sister to cancer, she launched the Adayar Cancer Institute in 1954. One of the most respected oncology centres in the world, it treats some 80,000 patients each year.
In recognition of her service to her country, in 1956, Reddy was awarded the Padma Bhushan by the Central Government. She never gave up her works till the end of her life and even at the age of 80, she was vibrant and energetic. Reddy died on July 22, 1968, eight days before completing 82.The government of Tamil Nadu has announced 'Hospital Day' celebrations to be held every year on her birthday, July 30.UNI