From Jhansi Ki Rani to Irom Sharmila, Indian women have always stood up for their rights and fought their battles despite restrictions and limitations. They are the shining beacons of hope and have displayed exemplary dedication in their respective fields. Here are 15 Indian women who clearly deserve a standing ovation:
1. Irom Chanu SharmilaAlso called the Iron Lady of Manipur, she holds the record for the longest hunger strike. The activist has been sitting on a strike for over a decade, demanding the repeal of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA). All of 28 years when she decided to fast, Sharmila was arrested three days after she began her strike for attempted suicide, and again in 2006 for protesting in Delhi. Even though her condition has been deteriorating, nothing has deterred the 42-year-old.
2. Chhavi RajawatRajawat is the first woman sarpanch in India with an MBA degree. She ditched a well-paying corporate job with one of India's biggest telecom firms to become the sarpanch of Soda, a village 60 kms from Jaipur. She has tirelessly been working for the people of the village and has successfully implemented many projects including rain water harvesting, toilets facilities etc.
3. Amrita DeviWay back in 1730, when Indian women had little say even in matters at home, this brave woman fought against the felling of tress by the Maharaja of Jodhpur in Marwar, Rajasthan, by sacrificing her life, along with those of her three daughters.
4. Phoolan DeviPhoolan Devi was a bandit who later went on to become a politician. She was popularly known as the Bandit Queen and became the moll of a gang leader of a group of bandits at a young age. Her paramour was killed in a fight for gang leadership among bandits, who also raped her. A ferocious Devi took banditry in her own hands and became the leader of the group.
Not only this, her gang later went on to shoot those who raped her and the Indian media called it an act of rebellion by an oppressed woman. Although, she was tried for it and many other crimes, she was India's only woman bandit and a badass one at that. She was murdered when she became the MP by rival bandits.