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This practice was initially met with local resistance, as it flew in the face of tradition.
Raja Rammohan Roy's efforts led to the abolition of Sati under Governor-General William Cavendish-Bentinck in 1829.
an important exception is the Stri Dharma Paddhati of Tryambakayajvan, an official at Thanjavur c. The text compiles strictures on women's behaviour dating back to the Apastamba sutra (c. when child marriages and a ban on remarriage by widows became part of social life in some communities in India.
The Muslim conquest in the Indian subcontinent brought purdah to Indian society.
Sati is an old, almost completely defunct custom among some communities, in which the widow was immolated alive on her husband's funeral pyre.
Immediately following the Bhakti movements, Guru Nanak, the first Guru of Sikhs, preached equality between men and women.
He advocated that women be allowed to lead religious assemblies; to lead congregational hymn singing called Kirtan or Bhajan; to become members of religious management committees; to lead armies on the battlefield; to have equality in marriage, and to have equality in Amrit (Baptism). Traditions such as Sati, Jauhar, and Devadasi among some communities have been banned and are largely defunct in modern India.
Kittur Chennamma, queen of the princely state Kittur in Karnataka, led an armed rebellion against the British in response to the Doctrine of lapse.
Abbakka Rani, queen of coastal Karnataka, led the defence against invading European armies, notably the Portuguese in the 16th century.