|Born||Hyderabad State, India|
|Political party||Republican Party of India|
|Children||Geeta Reddy, daughter|
Jetti Eshwari Bai[a] (1 December 1918 – 25 February 1991) was an Indian politician, a Member of the Legislative Assembly and president of the Republican Party of India. She worked for the upliftment of the backward classes who were subjected to slavery and caste discrimination for generations by the upper castes.
Eshwari Bai was born on 1 December 1918. She started her career as a teacher in Paropakarini School in Secunderabad and later started a school named Geetha Vidyalaya in Chilkalguda, Secunderabad. She held workshops for the poor women of the locality, who learned crafting, tailoring, painting etc., helping economically poor women to secure to support themselves and their families.
She founded the Civic Rights Committee (CRC) in the 1960s to contest the Hyderabad municipal elections as an apolitical party. It won four seats in those elections.
Inspired by B. R. Ambedkar, Bai joined the Scheduled Castes Federation (SCF) and in 1958, when SCF was renamed as the Republican Party of India (RPI), she was elected as General Secretary. She went on to become the President of RPI later. In 1962 general elections she lost on RPI ticket from Yellareddy Assembly constituency, but won in the 1967 polls. She was the Vice Chairperson of the Telangana Praja Samithi (TPS) and won a ticket in 1972 elections again from Yellareddy on an RPI - TPS ticket.
As a chairperson of the Women and Child Welfare, Bai was instrumental in bringing legislation for free education of girl students up to higher education. She was the secretary of Indian Conference of Social Welfare and member of the Indian Red Cross Society. She also fought for separate statehood for Telangana in 1969 and was imprisoned at the Chanchalguda jail in Hyderabad.
Bai had four brothers and a sister. She was married to Jetti Laxminarayana, a dentist from Pune, at the age of 13. Her daughter, J. Geeta Reddy, is a politician with the Indian National Congress party.
Bai died on 25 February 1991.
The Eshwari Bai Memorial Award was instituted in her honour.
- Eshwari is sometimes spelled Eashwari and as Eswari. The name is sometimes conjoined as Eshwaribai.
- V6 News Telugu (2 December 2015), Special Discussion On Biography of Eshwari Bai | 7PM Discussion - V6News, retrieved 18 July 2017
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- "ఉద్యమంలో సబ్బండ వర్ణాలు". Namaste Telanganaa. 1 June 2017. Retrieved 18 July 2017.
- A. Saye, Sekhar (27 April 2007). "It's all in the family". The Hindu. Retrieved 18 July 2017.
- "Eshwari Bai remembered". The Hindu. 25 February 2010. Retrieved 6 June 2017.
- "Sukhdeo Thorat receives Eashwari Bai Memorial Award". The Hindu. 1 December 2016. Retrieved 18 July 2017.