102-year-old Dalit woman wins polls in TN
HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times
Chennai, October 23, 2011
Days after 100-year-old Fauja Singh of Indian-origin became the oldest
person to complete a marathon, a 102-year-old Dalit woman in Tamil
Nadu has put on another display of centenarian vigour, winning a local
Thadagathi was elected a ward member in Pudukulam panchayat
of Madurai district, around 450 km south of Chennai, on Friday.
A state election commission official said she was the oldest elected
member in the local bodies in the state.
"Revered as Maruthuvatchi (village doctor conversant with traditional
medicine), Thadagathi has excelled as a midwife, having had a hand in
the delivery of nearly 1,000 babies," said panchayat president P
On her political debut, Independent candidate Thadagathi beat two
contestants 70 years younger.
"Vote for me, I will not swindle you or government money," was
Thadagathi's door-to-door campaign theme in Pudukulam, where she
arrived as a 10-year-old child bride.
Her husband died when she was 75 and she has outlived eight of her 12
children. Her youngest son is 56.
Thadagathi is still sprightly and even works in the fields of her
neighbour, lawyer S Muthuramalingam, and is at hand as a midwife when
required. "My first task is to see that there is peace in our village,
and then to make the village clean."
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