Did You Know? Pune's First MP Was A Woman: Here's All You Need To Know About Her

Did You Know? Pune's First MP Was A Woman: Here's All You Need To Know About Her

Indira Maydeo remains the sole woman Lok Sabha MP from Pune to date

Aakash SinghUpdated: Wednesday, April 03, 2024, 03:52 PM IST
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Representative Image | File Photo

The first Lok Sabha elections were held between 1951-52. Pune was under the Bombay region at that time since the state of Maharashtra had not been formed yet. The region comprised a total of 37 constituencies, including two in Pune - Poona South and Poona Central.

In Poona Central, Congress candidate Narhar Gadgil emerged victorious over Peasants & Workers Party (PWP) nominee Keshavrao Jedhe. Gadgil secured 1.02 lakh votes, while Jedhe garnered 42,200 votes.

Meanwhile, in Poona South, a woman named Indira Maydeo, a Congress leader, was elected as the Member of Parliament (MP) with 1.14 lakh votes against Socialist Party contestant Shridhar Limaye, who received 32,432 votes.

Maydeo was a Gandhian and actively participated in the country’s struggle for independence. Born on September 7, 1903, she attended Fergusson College in the city, where she earned her BSc degree. In 1927, she married Anant Govind Maydeo, with whom she had one son and three daughters.

Her daughter-in-law, Pushpa Maydeo, shared with the Indian Express, "She (Indirabai) was a graduate and participated in every agitation Mahatma Gandhi called for. She did not have a political background, but her contribution during the pre-independence movement, and her social touch, presented her as a promising candidate before Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru.”

Pushpa added that her mother-in-law focussed on addressing educational needs and creating employment opportunities during her tenure as MP.

Indira Maydeo remains the sole woman Lok Sabha MP from Pune to date.

2024 Lok Sabha polls

For the 2024 Lok Sabha polls, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has nominated former mayor Murlidhar Mohol as its candidate, while the Congress has put forward Kasba MLA Ravindra Dhangekar. Meanwhile, the Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi (VBA) has announced former Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) leader Vasant More as its candidate. More's entry into the race has turned it into a triangular contest.

Notably, the BJP has secured victory in Pune in the past two terms, with Anil Shirole (2014) and Girish Bapat (2019) registering significant wins. Prior to that, Congress' Suresh Kalmadi represented the Pune MP seat, winning consecutively in 2004 and 2009.

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