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Chandramukhi Basu was born in a Christian family, the daughter of Bhuban Mohan Basu, in Dehra Dun. She passed her First Arts examination from Dehradun Native Christian School in 1880, then became one of the first non-Hindu Indian girls to be admitted into Bethune College. Along with Kadambini Ganguly (q.v.), she received her Bachelor’s degree in Arts from Bethune College and School in 1883, thus becoming one of the first woman graduates in India. She went on to become the first woman MA from Calcutta University in 1884.

She became a lecturer at Bethune College in 1886, two years before the college separated from the school. Subsequently she became the principal of Bethune College, the first female head of an undergraduate college in India. She retired in 1891 to Dehra Dun because of bad health.

Her sister Bidhumukhi Basu became, along with Virginia Mary Mitra (Nandi) one of the first woman medical graduates from Calcutta Medical College in 1890, and her sister Bindubasini Basu graduated in medicine from CMC the following year.
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