SAROJINI NAIDU-The Nightingale of India
, the eldest daughter of scientist-philosopher, Aghornath Chattopadhyaya, and Barada Sundari Devi, a poetess was born on 13 February 1879 in Hyderabad. her father was also a linguist, a crusader, who established the Nizam's College in Hyderabad in 1878, pioneering English and women's education. she studied at the King's College, London and Girton College, Cambridge. Her ability to sing charmingly fetched her title 'Nightingale of India'
She began her political career in 1906. After 1917 she stepped into active politics. During 1903-17 sarojini came into contact with Gokhale, Tagore, Jinnah, Annie Besant, C.P.Rama Swami Iyea, Gandhi and Nehru. From 1915 to 1918 she lectured all over India on welfare of youth, dignity of labour, women's emancipation and nationalism. After meeting Jawaharlal Nehru in 1916, she took up the cause of the indigo worker of Champaran. In 1925 she was elected as the President of the congress.
Sarojini Naidu actively campaigned for the Montagu-Chelmsford Refroms, the Khilafat isue, the Rowlatt Act, the sabarmati Pact, the Satyagraha Pledge and the Civi Disobedience ovement. She was the first woman Governor of U.P. Her Presedentship of the asian Relations conference in 1947 was remarkable.
Sarojini Naidu also led an active literary life and attracted Indian intellectuals to her salon in Mumbai. Her first volume of poetry. "The Golden Threshold"(1905) was followed by the "Bird of time"(1912) and in 1914 she was elected a fellow of the royal Society of Literature. Her collected poems, all of which she wrote in English have been published under the title "The Secptraed Flute" (1928) and the "Feather of the Dawn"(1961).
At the age of seventy on 02 March 1949 she died in office at Lucknow.