Google on Monday, 16 August, commemorated Subhadra Kumari Chauhan, India’s first woman satyagrahi and a writer and freedom fighter, with a doodle on her 117th birth anniversary. On the occasion, the doodle recreated the iconic image of the trailblazer, sitting with a pen and paper, in a saree. The doodle is created by New Zealand-based guest artist Prabha Mallya.
She was born in a Rajput family in Uttar Pradesh’s Nihalpur village in 1904. She was known to write constantly, even in the horse cart on the way to school, and her first poem was published at just nine years old. The call for Indian independence reached its height during her early adulthood. As a participant in the Indian Nationalist Movement, she used her poetry to call others to fight for their nation’s sovereignty. Her poetry remained uniquely underscored by her resolute nationalism. Chauhan’s poem ‘Jhansi ki Rani’, which describes the life of Rani Lakhmi Bai, is one of the most recited and sung poems in Hindi literature. She continued to make revolutionary statements in the fight for freedom both on and off the page into the 1940s, publishing a total of 88 poems and 46 short stories. Chauhan passed away on February 15 in 1948. In honour of her exemplary work, an Indian Coast Guard ship was named after her.