Breast tax in Travancore

[iTSThursday #2]


Hello EnthusiasTST!


Did you know?


State of Travancore imposed a breast tax on women belonging to disadvantaged sections of society. Women from lower castes were not allowed to cover their breasts, and were taxed heavily if they did so. Tax collectors measured the breasts and levied tax accordingly.


However, a brave woman called Nangeli belonging to Ezhava caste, decided to protest by covering her chest without paying the breast-tax. When the inspector heard she was refusing to pay the tax, he went to her house to ask her to stop breaking the law. She refused to comply and cut her breasts off. Nangeli's sacrifice benefited all the women of Travancore, and ultimately forced the King to roll back the breast tax.


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