First Woman Chief Minister of India | The Creative Post (2023)

-by Abhrajita Mondal

–Reading Time – 7 min Approx

Today, women occupy prominent positions in Indian politics. In order to create gender equality and encourage active participation, the government has created a quota for women in politics. Women’s participation is around 65 percent currently, against 67 percent of men. Indian voters are voting women in prominent spots of power today. Political activism and voting are a few of the rights that women have come to enjoy now. However, this trend started way back. The movement began long ago in the 1900s. However, after India attained independence, the Indian constitution officially granted women suffrage. For the uninitiated ‘suffrage’ stands for the right to vote and stand in vote.First Woman Chief Minister of India | The Creative Post (1)

Today, you will know of the First Woman Chief Minister of India. The honor goes to Sucheta Kripalani. She was an Indian freedom fighter and politician, as well. She served as the head of Uttar Pradesh Government from 1963-1967. She is one of the first women to win the fight for suffrage. You should know about her. Sucheta Kripalani was born in a Bengali Brahmo family in Ambala. Her father worked as a medical offer. Owing to the transferable nature of the job, she studied in many different schools. She has a master’s degree in history from St. Stephens’s college, Delhi. She was a shy child. However, by the age of ten, she became a witness to the gory tales of the Jallianwala Bagh massacre through her father. Therefore, her personality started taking shape around that time.

There are many incidents from her life that are worth mention here. Firstly, she and her sister called out names for the Anglo-Indian children in her neighbourhood. Later, she also faced some deranging remarks on Hinduism from her Bible teacher. However, he learned more profound verses on Hinduism, back home and confronted her teacher. In the year 1936, she married twenty years senior congressman, J.B. Kripalani. Moreover, she also founded the All-India Mahila Congress in 1940. Thereafter, she participated in several political contests even after independence. The First Woman Chief Minister of India had an active political career, till 1971 when she retired.

First Woman Chief Minister of India – From Uttar Pradesh:

You ought to know more about the lady, Sucheta Kripalani. She has also served as an MP post-independence. There are several other titles she went on to occupy. She has served as the Minister of Labor, Community development and Industry. Her husband, Acharya J.B. Kripalani had established the Kisan Mazdoor Praja Party. However, she remained loyal to the congress. After her, India has seen at least 15 women chief ministers.

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They include political heavyweights like Jayalalitha, Sheila Dikshit, Vasundhara Raje and Rabri Devi. However, Sucheta Kripalani’s political home state Uttar Pradesh has seen just one. Mayawati, the Dalit leader of BSP or Bahujan Samaj Party, is the one we are talking about. Interestingly, the four-time elect was born in a hospital named by Sucheta Kripalani. So, now you know more facts about the First Woman Chief Minister of India. She is incidentally the First Woman Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh. You will be amazed to know that Uttar Pradesh has seen a rise in women political participants.

First Woman Governor of India:

Now, you must be eager to know about the first woman governor of India. Sarojini Naidu is the first woman governor of the country. She is also called the ‘Nightingale of India’. Moreover, she is revered as the most popular political female personality of India. She holds several titles. Sarojini Naidu is a poet, activist, freedom-fighter, orator and political administrator. She was born in 1879 to Bengali parents. From the very beginning, she was an exceptional student and had mastered Urdu, Telugu, English and Persian, apart from her mother tongue Bengali.First Woman Chief Minister of India | The Creative Post (2)

She has a passion for writing and has excelled in poetry since childhood. Rabindranath Tagore and Jawahar Lal Nehru have also praised Sarojini Naidu for her skills in languages. She was one of the first women to participate in India freedom struggle. She went on to become the first woman Governor from Uttar Pradesh. She is still remembered as one of the pioneers of secular India. Many people call her a fearless personality. You should know about some of her most celebrated works. They are Song of a Dream, A Love Song from the North and many books. Some of them are Essential Reader: Sarojini Naidu and The Bird of Time; Songs of Life, Death & the Spring, to name a few.

There are a few things that one should learn from Sarojini Naidu. The first one amongst them is patriotism, second is action and women empowerment. These are a few of the qualities that she imbibed in others. Now, you know so much about the first woman governor of India.

Who is the First Woman Chief Minister of Delhi?

After knowing about the women political activists and fighters, you have got a fair idea about the political personalities. Now, you must be more eager to know about the first woman chief minister of Delhi. It is none other than the feisty lady, Sushma Swaraj. She assumed office in 1998. However, she performed as the CM for 52 days. She resigned thereafter. Congress Sheila Dikshit succeeded her. Moreover, she occupied many positions of power in the past. She holds many titles. Amongst them, ‘the most loved politician in India’ is one.First Woman Chief Minister of India | The Creative Post (3)

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Are you interested in knowing about her personal life and career? She was born Sushma Sharma in Ambala. Her parents hailed from Lahore. She completed her studies at Punjab University. In the 1973, she started practice as a supreme court advocate. She married fellow colleague Swaraj Kaushal. Additionally, she started her political journey at the age of 25. That was way back in 1977. You should know about her other important positions.

From 2014-2019, she was the Minister of External Affairs. Moreover, she was the only woman politician to occupy this position after Indira Gandhi. As an External Affairs Minister, she garnered a lot of respect for bringing Gita back to India. She was a disabled girl who was missing for 15 years and was found in Pakistan. The lady died in 2019, after a cardiac arrest. That brings an active politician’s journey to the end.

Who is the First Woman Chief Justice of India?

India is likely to get its First Woman Chief Justice of India in 2027. Justice BV Nagarathna is in line for this position. She is presently a judge with the Karnataka High Court. You will be amazed to know that her appointment will be a historic moment for India’s judiciary. Justice BV Nagarathna was born in 1962 and began her career in 1987. Moreover, she has practiced commercial law, constitutional law and administrative law. You will be amazed to know that her father was also the CJI or Chief Justice of India. She was also the Additional Judge of Karnataka High Court in 2008. Justice Nagarathna was locked in a courtroom by a group of lawyers in 2009, for some internal matters. However, she handled the situation in a dignified manner. During her tenure in Karnataka High Court, she handled some key cases revolving around education policies.First Woman Chief Minister of India | The Creative Post (4)

During the Coronavirus peak last year, she directed the online education policy. She also closely monitored the migrant crisis during the lockdown. She has been vocal in a number of situations. One of them being the freedom of the press. In December 2020, she took up the issue of women in a divorce case. She said that society still cannot treat an empowered woman well. The patriarchal system is to be blamed for this ideology of the Indian society. 2027 is hailed to be an epic year, once BV Nagarathna takes on the highest position in the Indian judiciary system.

First Female President of India:

Pratibha Patil holds the title. She is the 12th president of India. Pratibha Patil held her office from 2007-2012. Prior to that, she also held the position of the Governor of Rajasthan. Patil started her law career as a practicing lawyer at the Jalgaon District Court. She always fought for women’s rights and for the upliftment of the poor women. At the age of 27 years, she successfully contested her first election in the Maharashtra State Legislature.

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The first female president of India has served many other prominent positions. In her public tenure, she has occupied several important positions. She has established several institutions for the public. They are industrial training institutions for the downtrodden, handicapped and nomadic tribes. You will also find her fighting for the backward classes. She has also made a decent contribution towards women’s development by establishing training centers for women in fields like sewing, music and computer.

There are many such women who occupy prominent positions in India today. Pratibha Patil is just one of them. There are plenty more. You will see the best of women empowerment examples from the Democratic Republic, India. There is a lot more to come in the future. As a society, we need to understand the true meaning for women empowerment. Society needs to give adequate respect to the ‘empowered women’. The future holds good, if such a change in mindset and ideology is seen ahead of us.

-by Abhrajita Mondal

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