History was created on Wednesday when the Indian Navy inducted the first-ever woman pilot. The first batch of female officers passed out from the Indian Naval Academy, Ezhimala, Kannur. Shubhangi Swaroop, a native of Bareilly in Uttar Pradesh, was among 328 cadets who passed out. Swaroop, the only woman in her batch, became the first woman pilot in the Navy.
The female officers, who were from the Indian Navy, Indian Coast Guard and two overseas cadets (from Tanzania and Maldives), have been appointed in the Naval Armament Inspection (NAI) branch. "I know, this is not just an exciting opportunity but a great responsibility also," said Shubhangi, as per a report in The Times of India. She would undergo pilot training at Dundigal Air Force Academy in Hyderabad.
Navy Chief Admiral Sunil Lanba said while the first female officer was inducted in the force in 1991, it is the first time that a woman would take up the role of a pilot. “Though the Indian Navy started inducting female officers in 1991, now the areas of induction have been expanded,” Chief of Naval Staff, Admiral Sunil Lanba told TOI.
For Shubhangi, the daughter of a Naval commander, the appointment is a dream come true. Swaroop is in splendid company of three other women cadets. Astha Segal from New Delhi, Roopa A from Puducherry and Sakthi Maya S from Kerala are also history-makers after becoming the country’s first women officers at the Naval Armament Inspectorate (NAI) branch of the Navy.The appointment of women as officers in Naval Armament Inspection (NAI) branch will be the first time in the history of Indian Navy and it is a great recognition for the women in India.