Published: Sun, April 01, 2018
Research | By Dana Schwartz

Google celebrates 153rd birthday of Anandi Gopal Joshi

Google celebrates 153rd birthday of Anandi Gopal Joshi

Anandi Joshi was born as Yamuna on 31st March 1865 to a Brahmin family settled in Kalyan in present-day Maharashtra. She was only 19 at the time.

Her husband, Gopalrao, inspired her to educate herself at a time women education was not given much importance. "Her name was Anandi Gopal Joshi, and her story is one of courage and perseverance", writes Google. As was custom during the mid-nineteenth century, Yamuna (Anandi Gopal Joshi) was pressured to marry at a very young age - nine.

Ananpi Goshi was India's first female physician - she is remembered today by Google. Wilder offered to help the couple on the pretext that they convert themselves to Christianity, but it was not acceptable to Gopalrao and Anandi. Since this was considered unusual for the time, he was considered a progressive thinker. Anandi gave birth to a boy at the age of 14, but he soon died due to lack of medical care.

In Pennsylvania, Anandi completed her thesis on "Obstetrics among the Aryan Hindus".

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Many have since walked in her footsteps to achieve their dreams and transform the Indian society, one of whom was Rukhmabai Raut - the first practicing Indian female physician in colonial India - who, too, was honoured by Google with a doodle on her birth anniversary five months ago. Her better half, however, encouraged her to continue her education. He taught her to read and write.

However, back home in Calutta, Anandi's health started deteriorating and Carpenter sent medicines from the US.

Joshi had dreams of starting a medical college for women in India. Her success in studies was hailed in India and even Queen Victoria congratulated her on her graduation from a foreign land. The pallu (veil) of her sari is aflutter in the breeze as if in cheerful celebrations of her medical achievement, all at the age of 19. Her health had significantly declined due to cold and unfamiliar weather and diet. She even went on to suffer tuberculosis or TB. Unfortunately, the medicines failed to heal her completely.

Anandibai succumbed to tuberculosis within a year of her return on February 26, 1887, just short of her 22 birthday. Yes, we are talking about Anandi Gopal Joshi, India's first lady to qualify as a doctor from the United States of America in 1886. Her death was mourned throughout India.

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