In a first, a woman has been inducted as a pilot in the Indian Navy. Shubhangi Swaroop, who hails from Uttar Pradesh, will soon be flying Maritime Reconnaissance aircraft.
Three other women cadets, Astha Segal from New Delhi, Roopa A from Puducherry and Sakthi Maya S from Kerala, also created history by becoming the country’s first women officers at the Naval Armament Inspectorate (NAI) branch of the Navy. After their Naval Orientation course, all the four in their early 20s, had passed out of the Ezhimala Naval Academy at a glittering function here yesterday attended by Naval chief Admiral Sunil Lanba.
For Shubhangi, who is the daughter of a Naval commander, its a dream come true on being selected as a pilot. Though Shubhangi is the first Naval woman pilot, the Navy’s Aviation branch has had women officers operating as air traffic control officers and as ‘observers’ in the aircraft who are responsible for communication and weapons, Southern Naval spokesperson Commander Sreedhar Warrier told PTI.
The NAI branch is responsible for auditing and assessing the state of weapons and ammunition of the Navy. All the four will be undergoing subsequent professional training in their respective chosen branches before being employed on duty, Commander Warrier said. Shubhangi will be trained at the Air Force Academy at Hyderabad which trains pilots of the Army, Navy and the Air Force, he said