People often get shocked when they first hear about the profession which allows you to fly sky high. They come up with rather a strange question like, ‘How come a profession lets you fly?’. Well, when you are determined to move upwards, nothing in the world can drag you down. With such a willing power, you are destined to become a pilot, ain’t you? The following story displays the journey of a determined woman, Avani Chaturvedi, who’s become India’s first lady pilot to hover a fighter jet. Nobody had thought that a woman would choose ‘aviation’ as her profession? Lt. Avani Chaturvedi’s story needs to be told to the whole country.
Avani Chaturvedi touched the sky with success as she will go down in history books for becoming the first Indian woman to fly a fighter aircraft solo. On 19 Feb 2018, she had the privilege to fly a MiG-21 Bison aircraft in her first solo flight, a dream come true moment for her.
“Chaturvedi became the first Indian woman to fly a fighter aircraft solo when she flew a MiG-21 bison in her first solo flight,” the official said, according to a PTI report. She has not only unlocked her achievement but has also inspired other women too. “It is a unique achievement for Indian Air Force and the country,” Air Commodore Prashant Dixit told ANI.
Avani Chaturvedi kick-started her career at the Indian Air Force base in Jamnagar, Gujarat on February 19, in a MiG-21 Bison aircraft. She joined the Indian Air Force fighter squadron on 18 June 2016 – backed by Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar – along with two other woman pilots, Bhawana Kanth and Mohana Singh, the first ever batch to do so.
The 24-year-old Avani Chaturvedi comes from Rewa district in Madhya Pradesh. She completed her Bachelors in Technology from Banasthali University, Rajasthan in 2014, before she cracked the Indian Air Force exam and then she moved next step as she went on to train at the Hyderabad Air Force Academy in Dindigul.
Women were granted a green signal by the government to apply for the ‘Fighter Stream’ in October 2015. But they are still restricted from holding combat roles. The government points operational and logistical shortcomings for the same reason. As of now, the only countries that do have women fighter pilots are Britain, the United States and Israel.