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Kiran Bedi: The woman who changed Tihar forever

Meghan Markle once said, “Women don’t need to find a voice, but they need to be encouraged to use it”. And the one who knew to use her strength wisely is Kiran Bedi.

Born on June 9, 1949 in Punjab, Amritsar to parents Prakash Peshawaria and Prem Peshawaria, Kiran Bedi attended the Sacred Heart Convent School where she participated in the national Cadet Corps (NCC).

And in july 1972, the only woman among 80 men, Bedi became first woman officer in Indian Police Service. India’s ‘Iron lady’ single-handedly changed the face of Indian police force.

On the occasion of her birthday, lets drive down through the various reforms brought in by Kiran Bedi

Famous as ‘Crane Bedi’, she did not hesitate to order cars to be towed away when drivers broke rules. She showed her dedication to her profession when she even ordered for towing Prime Minister Indira Gandhi’s car for parking violation

Bedi turned Tihar into a model prison. She set up separate barracks for criminals who had been recruiting gang members, selling contraband and extorting money from fellow inmates. Bedi arranged vocational training for prisoners with certificates, so that they could find job after release.

Bedi’s reform programme at Tihar received worldwide acclaim. She won her the Ramon Magsaysay Award in 1994.

Bedi set up several detox centres in Delhi, Mizoram to reduce drug abuse among officials and civilians. In 2003, Bedi became first woman to honour the position of United Nations civilian police adviser.

Along with police service, she was also known for her services in tennis court. Bedi won several titles between 1965 and 1978 including Gold medal at National Sports Festival for Women in 1976.

As a social activist, Bedi is fighting corruption alongside Anna Hazare. Interestingly, Bedi has also served as lecturer in Political Science at a college in Amritsar. Kiran Bedi has been voted as India’s most admired and trusted woman in India. An idol for millions, Kiran Bedi is a woman we all look up to with pride

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