|Member of the Politburo of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)|
|Assumed office |
|Member of Parliament – Rajya Sabha|
|Born||17 October 1947|
Calcutta, West Bengal, India
|Political party||Communist Party of India (Marxist)|
|Relations||Radhika Roy (sister) |
Prannoy Roy (brother in law)
Arundhati Roy (relative)
In 2005, she became the first woman member of the CPI(M) Politburo. She has also been the general secretary of the All India Democratic Women's Association (AIDWA) from 1993 to 2004, and thereafter its Vice-President.
In 1967, after graduation from Miranda House, she left for London, where she worked with Air India at Bond Street for four years. While working for Air India, she campaigned against the mandatory wearing of skirts in the airlines rather than the saree. The Air India headquarters finally agreed with her and ever since then women working for the airline in London can exercise a choice of whether to wear a saree or a skirt as their uniform.
In an interview, Karat says she returned to India motivated to work for the people. While working in London, she became associated with the anti-imperialist, and anti-war movements during the Vietnam War and Marxist ideology.
In 1971, she decided to leave her job and return to Calcutta. She started her political work as a student activist since under the guidance of the Party she enrolled as a student in Calcutta University. On the suggestion of the party to understand practical politics, she joined the Calcutta University. Initially she worked with students in the college campus and later during the Bangladesh war at refugee camps in the State. She was also writing for the Party weekly and later became a full-time worker there. In 1975, she shifted to Delhi "In 1975 I shifted to Delhi because I wanted to work in the trade unions. At that time our party general secretary was Comrade P. Sundaraiah. He was ahead of his time. He had a clear perspective of the area of work to assign workers. He had a sensitive cadre policy. I was privileged to join the party in Delhi when he was the leader. I was accepted and got my membership."
On 7 November 1975, she married Prakash Karat. The same year she started working as a trade union organiser with textile mill workers in North Delhi. She grew to be active with worker's movements and the Indian women's movements. She gained prominence in the campaign for reform of rape laws in the 1980s. Karat is a prominent campaigner for gender issues and has fought within the party for adequate representation for women in its leadership.
On 11 April 2005, she was elected to the Indian Parliament, Rajya Sabha as a CPI(M) member for West Bengal. In 2005, she was also elected to the Politburo of the Communist Party of India (Marxist), the highest decision-making body of the party and Brinda Karat is its first woman member.
She is married to Prakash Karat, a Keralite by origin and a prominent CPI(M) leader, who was the general secretary of the party till 19 April 2015. Her sister Radhika Roy is married to Prannoy Roy, founder and CEO of NDTV. In 2005, she participated in Amu, a film made by her niece, Shonali Bose, on the Anti-Sikh riots in 1984. She is an aunt of the historian Vijay Prashad.
- Survival and Emancipation: Notes from Indian Women's Struggles. Three Essays Collective, New Delhi, 2005. ISBN 81-88789-37-2.
- Interview, livemint
- Book Review, Frontline, Jul 02 – 15, 2005 Archived 15 May 2008 at the Wayback Machine
- Author profile, threeessays
- New woman on top December 2004
- The 7th National Conference of AIDWA, Frontline, Dec. 04 – 17, 2004
- "The Rediff Interview/Marxist leader Brinda Karat". Rediff.com. 4 May 2005. Retrieved 22 February 2019.
- "A brand named Brinda". Calcutta: The Telegraph. 16 April 2005. Retrieved 23 February 2019.
- "The less sociable socialist". India Today. 14 December 2007. Retrieved 19 September 2019.
- "The Rediff Interview/CPI-M Politburo member Brinda Karat". Rediff.com. 6 May 2005. Retrieved 22 February 2019.
- "January 27, 2013". archives.peoplesdemocracy.in. Retrieved 25 May 2019.
- "Our politics is still regressive vis a vis women representation: Brinda Karat". The Hans India. 8 January 2016. Retrieved 23 February 2019.
- "Yechury, Brinda Karat take oath". The Hindu. 23 August 2005. Retrieved 23 February 2019.
- Exclusive Interview/Brinda Karat rediff.com; "Since her equally talented sister Radhika Roy and brother-in-law Dr Prannoy Roy run NDTV (New Delhi Television), Brinda's Leftist orientation is intriguing for many"
- Brinda Karat on IMDb
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