Google is celebrating the 132nd birthday of Anasuya Sarabhai and has dedicated a Google Doodle to honour the pioneer of the women's labour movement in India.
Today's doodle was created by Maria Qamar, a Pakistani-Canadian artist and author of the book 'Trust No Aunty'.
"Anasuya's dedication to justice and equality is something I can relate to," said Qamar. In drawing the activist, she took inspiration from the Indian textile industry. "I portrayed delicate fabrics and traditional patterns found in our homes and our closets," explained Qamar.
Born in Ahmedabad on November 11 in 1885 to a wealthy family of industrialists and business people, she became an orphan at the age of nine; after which, she, her brother and a younger sister were sent to live with an uncle.
She was forced to marry at the age of 13, before escaping to England with the help of her brother in 1912 to take a medical degree.
With the help of her brother, Anasuya switched to London School of Economics after she came to know of animal dissection involved in her studies which were against her Jain beliefs.
In England, Anasuya Sarabhai got involved in the Suffragette movement. Once back in India, she started working for the betterment of women and poor.
From here Anasuya's journey started to serve the cause of social equality and the next year she returned to India and started working with the marginal and disempowered communities.
She began by opening a school for poor students of all castes and creches and toilets for women. The seeds of her plunge into the labour movement were sown during an incident that is best described by her own words.
Sarabhai took up the cause of local mill workers after she came to know of their 36-hour work shifts. In 1914, she helped Ahmedabad's weavers successfully organise their first strike for higher wages. Later, she became the voice of several workers and negotiated with mill owners on their behalf for better working conditions. She died in 1972.