Isha Basant Joshi

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Isha Basant Joshi
Born (1908-12-31)31 December 1908
Education La Martiere Girls Lucknow University
Occupation Civil servant

Isha Basant Joshi (born Isha Basant Mukand; 31 December 1908), is an Indian author. She published books under the name of Esha Joshi. She was the first woman to be accepted as an officer in the Indian Administrative Service. She was also the first "Indian" to be accepted into the "Bastion of the British"[1] school of La Martiniere Girls High School in Lucknow, India.


Mukand was the first Indian girl educated at La Martiniere girls high school and she then went on to study at Isabella Thoburn College and Lucknow University where she obtained an MA.

She went on to study in Britain and she claimed the honour of being the first woman to be an officer in the Indian Administrative Service (one of the three key organisations created to organise India as part of the British Empire).

She went on to serve in roles as senior roles in the Ministry of Education as well as editing a magazine before her retirement in 1966.[1] However, she published a number of books under the name of Esha Joshi long after this date.


In 2004, it was reported that Joshi, who at that time was a 96-year-old childless widow, was being looked after by distant relatives "near a cowshed in the servant quarters of her own palatial mansion in Lucknow". Following media reports, however, she was taken inside.[1]

Major works - by Esha Joshi (incomplete)[edit]

  • The Jewel in the Case and other stories, ISBN 81-7189-564-6 [2]
  • Spindrift: Poems, ISBN 81-7189-562-X, 1994, Writers Workshop [2]
  • Sanctuary, poems, 1987
  • included in: Narayan The Journal of Commonwealth Literature, 1995


  1. ^ a b c Uncivil Treatment Shahira Naim The Tribune 14 November 2004, Chandigarh, India accessed July 2007
  2. ^ a b Esha Joshi at accessed July 2007