Hyderabad: The Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) region will have a woman as its Mayor for the next two terms (10 years). The post will be held by a woman corporator in the General category. This is the first time that the post has been reserved exclusively for a woman. Prior to this, it was reserved for the backward classes.
So far, only three women have served as Mayors of the Hyderabad region. The ensuing Mayor will only be the fourth woman to hold the post. In this article, we profile the three women.
Rani Kumudini Devi
Rani Kumudini Devi was born to Pingle Venaktaramana Reddy, former Deputy Prime Minister of Hyderabad State, on January 23, 1911, in Wadepally, Warangal district. She belonged to the Wanaparthy royal family (samsthanam).
After serving the Chairman of the health committee in the city’s erstwhile civic body— Municipal Corporation of Hyderabad (MCH), Rani Kumudini Devi was unanimously elected as the first woman Mayor in the year 1962.
The tidings were far from smooth. The city faced one of its worst floods in 1962, demanding all the time and attention of the civic authorities. Kumudini’s works also changed the way the city would be. The land on which the present GHMC stands was thanks to her efforts.
She represented the Wanaparthy constituency in the legislative assembly from the year 1962 to 1972.
Sarojini Pulla Reddy
A member of the Indian National Congress, Sarojini Pulla Reddy was elected as a councilor of MCH in the year 1965. She went on to become the Mayor of the city in the same year. She was later nominated to be the first chairperson of the Hyderabad Urban Development Authority in 1975.
She served as the Member of Legislative Assembly from Malakpet constituency in 1967. After representing the constituency twice, she lost the election in 1978. She held Ministerial portfolios of Municipal Administration, Health and Women and Child Welfare in the Cabinets of Bhavanam Venkatram, T. Anjaiah, and Kotla Vijaya Bhaskar Reddy.
Known for her close association with the first woman Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, she served as the member of the Congress Working Committee in 2001.
Banda Karthika Reddy
After GHMC was formed in the year 2007, the first elections were held in 2009. Congress Party’s Banda Karthika Reddy was made the Mayor. The first time corporator from Tarnaka was declared elected unopposed as no other candidate’s name was proposed by any party.
In 2010 she became the Vice-Chairperson, All India Mayors’ Council, 2010.