Fatima Sheikh


    In News

    • Recently, the 192nd birth anniversary of Fatima Sheikh was observed.

    About Fatima Sheikh

    • She was a pioneering teacher, anti-caste activist, a proponent of girls’ education, and a social reformer in 19th-century Maharashtra.
    • She was born on 9 January 1831 in Pune. 
    • She was considered to be a feminist icon, and in pre-independent India, she had to fight social ostracism and discrimination to bring about a change in the country. 
    • She was a colleague of Jyotiba Phule and his wife Savitribai Phule, who also worked relentlessly with Sheikh to focus on issues of caste, Sati, female empowerment, widow remarriage, inter-caste marriage and education.
    • In 1848, Savitribai, Fatima and Jyotiba opened the first school for girls inside the premises of Fatima’s home in Pune in spite of loud, threatening opposition.  
      • Other schools for Dalits and women followed, with Fatima and Savitribai going to individual families across the town in attempts to persuade them into enrolling their children.
    • Recognition: In 2022, Fatima Shaikh was honoured with a Google Doodle on her birthday.
      •  Today, some state governments have included her mention in their history or political science syllabi.
    • In 2014, Sheikh’s achievements were featured by the government in the form of a profile in Urdu textbooks, along with other exemplary and resolute educators of her time.

    Source: IE