Trivandrum: Legendary revolutionist turned social activist an icon of Indian women's struggles for social liberation, Captain Lakshmi Sahgal, 97, breathed her last in a private hospital at Kanpur at 11.20 am , July 23.
Captain Lakshmi was in a coma since last Wednesday when she had a stroke. She is survived by daughters Subhashini Ali and Anisa Puri, her grandchildren Shaad Ali, Neha and Nishant Puri and sister Mrinalini Sarabhai.
There will be no cremation ceremony held as her body has been donated to the Ganesh Shankar Vidyarthi Medical College in Kanpur.
Freedom fighter Captain Lakshmi is known as the 'tigress' of Azad Hind Fauj and was a close aide of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose.
Born on October 24, 1914, in Madras Presidency (Chennai), British India, Captain Lakshmi's father Dr S Swaminathan, was a lawyer at Madras High Court and mother AV Ammukutty was a social worker. This revolutionist was qualified as a doctor from the Madras Medical College in 1938.
She met Subhash Chandra Bose in Singapore in 1943. He spoke of the need to create an all- women's regiment in the Indian National Army in the fight for India's independence, and made her its commander.
In 1971, Sahgal joined the Communist Party of India (Marxist) and represented the party in the Rajya Sabha. She was awarded the Padma Vibhushan in 1998.
Mourning the death of the Pride of Indian womanhood, Padma Ramachandran, a retired IAS official from Trivandrum said, “Captain Lakshmi was always an inspiration for us. She fought for women rights. She was the first one who came forward and proved to us what women can achieve in our society. She was a role model for all of us. When everybody preferred to stay at home and enjoy the comforts she came out of it and worked for the helpless.”
image courtesy: www.keralathanima.com