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Kadambini Ganguly (18th July 1861 3rd October 1923) and
Chandramukhi Basu were the two first female graduates from India
and the whole of British Empire. Kadambini was also the first South
Kadambini Ganguly (18th July 1861 3rd October 1923) and Chandramukhi Basu were the two first female graduates from India and the whole of British Empire. Kadambini was also the first South Asian female physician, trained in western medicine, to graduate in South Asia. She was the daughter of Brahmo reformer Braja Kishore Basu and wife of Dwarkanath Ganguly, a Brahmo reformer himself. Popularly she was also amongst one of the founding members of Bhagalpur Mahila Samiti in 1863, which was one of the first women organizations in India.
Her primary education was done at Banga Mahila Vidyalaya. In 1878 she became the first woman to pass the University of Calcuttas entrance exam. Through her efforts, Bethune College first introduced Arts and then graduation courses in 1883. Thus she and Chandramukhi Basu became the first graduates from Bethune College, making them the first in the country as well.
Kadambini later studied medicine at the Kolkata Medical College. In 1886, she received Graduate of Bengal Medical College degree. She did come across some opposition from the teaching staff, and orthodox sections of society. She went to the United Kingdom in 1892 and returned to India after qualifying as LRCP (Edinburgh), LRCS (Glasgow) and GFPS (Dublin). After working for a short a short period in Lady Dufferin Hospital, she started her own private practice.
A great heads up to these women for their achievements.