The Epic Story of India’s First Women Doctor at 21, and died at 22
Anandi Joshi who is India’s first woman to become a doctor at the age of 21 and died at only 22.
We usually overlook unsung heroes who made our country proud. They deserve all the honor for shaping out a reputation for themselves as successful intellects. They perceive the value of time and continued to work day and night to reach greater peaks. Their success provides as a testimony to the fact.
With complete commitment and determination, those warriors have set an ideal example for the present and future generations. If you want to ask a successful person’s role model today, they would mention the icon that they adored of their generation and that is natural to the fact.
As they say, when intellects speak, it’s more essential to give an ear in a purpose to come through with flying colors. We have looked at successful people of today’s generation and they are up to a respectable position because they followed the track of their role models.
Now, let us come to our main topic
It is well and good that If you are aware of Anandi Joshi. But if you don’t know who she is, then this is the perfect time to know about her. You will be really astonished after learning her story. She was born on March 31, 1865, in Thane district of Maharashtra.
It was a time when girls were not educated, Anandi Joshi was the first Indian women to graduate with a degree in medicine in the United States. She became a role model to generations of girls to pursue their higher education.
At the time of mid 19th century, Anandi Joshi was unwillingly married at a very early age of 9 years, as it was a tradition at that time. She got wedlock with a person who is 30 years old, almost more than double of her age. His name was Gopalrao and worked as a postal clerk in the same town where she used to live.
Anandi Gopal Joshi at the age of 14 she became a mother, but sadly, her infant died in only 10 days due to lack of medical observation and facilities. She was extremely depressed and faced intense sadness at fourteen.
She recognized what was really lacking in the country and finally determined to work on medical care in India. She told her husband Gopalrao about she was eager to become a doctor and also a physician. Gopalrao supported her decision to study medicine and that is when the Joshi’s journey started.
Her husband wrote a letter to an American missionary seeking permission if Anandi could pursue her education in the United States. He was very helpful to his wife and even asked about an appropriate job for him so that he could stay with her.
But when in the year 1883, when Gopalrao Joshi was relocated to Serampore (present West Bengal). He could find no other option and persuaded Anandi to go to the United States all alone. Before that, he said some strong words for her wife as he asked her to set an example for all other girls in India to fulfill their dreams of going for higher education.
Anandi alone registered with the Women’s Medical College of Pennsylvania and was successfully acknowledged admission. She has traveled from Calcutta to New York by water. She started her medical education and started pursuing the grand scheme of things when she was only 19. In the United States, her health, which was actually not so good from the time she was in India, further became worse due to the cold weather conditions and unfamiliar diet.
When things started to become bad to worse, she has endured tuberculosis and in spite of that, she remained concentrated and motivated to do her MD in medicine. She has become the headlines for all the right sense and became very popular in the Indian presser. After completion of her graduation, the Queen of England, Empress of India and Queen Victoria sent her heart-filled message.
When she came back to India in 1886, she received a grand welcome and was appointed as the physician-in-charge at the Albert Edward Hospital in the Kohlapur state (present Maharashtra).
On the day February 26, 1887, a month before her 22nd birthday, Anandi Joshi died due to tuberculosis. Her aim to start her own medical college for women remained incomplete. Her dismiss hit the headlines across India and the whole country was filled with tears after the hearing the news. As a token of honor, her ashes were kept in a cemetery in Poughkeepsie in New York in the United States.
In Anandi Joshi’s tribute, the Institute for Research and Documentation in Social Sciences (IRDS), an NGO from Lucknow, till today present the ‘Anandibai Joshi Award for Medicine’ in honor of her initial works to the origin of advancing medical and health science in India. Also, the Government of Maharashtra introduced an association in Anandi Gopal Joshi’s name.