Chughtai was ninth of the ten children. She was born in Uttar Pradesh 1911 and began writing at an early age. Her desire to write was inspired by her elder brother, Mirza Azim Beg Chughtai who was known for his humorous writings.
Her stories were way ahead of time and faced criticism for her honest depictions of women’s lives.
She avoided an early arranged marriage at the age of 15 and convinced her parents instead for a bachelor’s degree at Isabella Thoburn College.
She later joined Aligarh Muslim University to study teaching and became the first Indian-Muslim women to attain a degree in arts and education.
Later she started writing to advocate for human rights. Her most famous work was ‘Lihaaf,’ which tells the story of a romantic relationship between a wealthy landlord’s wife and her female servant, questioned double standards and encouraged liberation.