Bachoobai Ardeshir Godrej

Bachoobai Ardeshir Godrej (1872-1891)
Pirojbai Sohrabji Kamdin (1875-1891)
Historically important document, perhaps a newspaper
layout-artwork, for “Kaiser-I-Hind”

by Studio artist of Kaiser-I-Hind
dated December, 1891

Oil colour on paper
22 x 17 in. (55.7 x 43.3 cm.)

Bachoobai A. Godrej was the wife of Ardeshir Burjorji Sorabji
Godrej (1868-1936). Ardeshir belonged to a wealthy Parsi-
Zoroastrian family of Bombay and was also the founder of Godrej
Brothers Co.; he married Bachoobai in 1890, as soon as she turned
eighteen. Pirojbai Sorabji Kamdin was Ardeshir’s second cousin.

On 25 April 1891, Bachoobai and Pirojbai decided to climb to the
viewing platform of the 85-meter high Rajabai Tower, where one
or two miscreants accosted them. According to legend, instead of
giving into their demands, the two good-looking women jumped
and lost their lives. Ardeshir rarely spoke of his loss, nor did he
ever remarry. Ardeshir and Bachoobai had no children.

This painting was specially commissioned with portraits of both
the ladies, also illustrating the Rajabai tower. It was published as
a tribute in the then popular publication – Kaiser-I-Hind, founded
by Framjee Cowasji Mehta. It covered the controversies around
Rajabai Tower Tragedy.