Captain Lakshmi Sehgal passes away

imageCaptain Lakshmi Sehgal (97), a great revolutionist in the Indian National Army and very close aide of Netaji Subhash Chandra died at Kanpur in Uttar Pradesh.

  • She was born as Lakshmi Swaminathan, in Chennai.
  • In 1938, she did MMBS and diploma in gynaecology and obstetrics and worked as a doctor in the Government Kasturba Gandhi Hospital located at Triplicane Chennai.
  • She left for Singapore after an unsuccessful marriage with pilot P.K.N. Rao. There she met the members of Netaji’s Indian National Army.
  • She set up a clinic for the poor, most of whom were migrant laborers from India. It was at this time that she started participatind actively in the India Independence League.
  • In 1942, during the surrender of Singapore by the British to the Japanese, she served wounded prisoners of war many of whom who intended to form an Indian liberation army.
  • In 1943, after meeting Netaji, she received the permission to set up a women’s regiment- Rani of Jhansi regiment.
  • Dr. Lakshmi Swaminathan became Captain of the same regiment and thus title remained attached to her throughout her life
  • In 1944, INA fought against British army where INA retreated. 
  • In May 1945, Captain Lakshmi was arrested by the British Army and was sent to India for trials.
  • In 1947 she married Colonel Prem Kumar Sahgal in Lahore. After their marriage, they settled in Kanpur, where she continued with her medical practice and aided the refugees who were arriving in large numbers following the Partition of India.
  • Later in 1971, she joined Communist Party of India (Marxist) and represented the party in the Rajya Sabha. 
  • In 1981, She was among the founding members of AIDWA.
  • During the Bangladesh crisis, she held relief camps and medical aid in Calcutta for people who took refuge into India from Bangladesh.
  • Captain Lakshmi’s daughter, Subhashini Ali, is a prominent Communist politician and labor activist.
  • The filmmaker Shaad Ali is Captain Lakshmi’s grandson.

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