Antra Mehta, a flying officer with the Indian Air Force is ready to soar high in the sky, but this time, as a fighter pilot. Mehta is the first woman fighter pilot from Maharashtra, and she is the 10th woman pilot across India. The Nagpur girl is an engineer and also a national level basketball player, Times Of India reported.  Her advanced training will continue at the Air Force station in Bidar and Kalaikonda.

The Passing Out Parade

A passing out parade was held at Dundigal, Hyderabad, where the ‘Wings’ and ‘Brevets’ were presented to the cadets successfully completing the Flying and Navigation training, respectively. At the academy in Hyderabad Antra was trained to fly the Pilatus PC7. Further, appearing for stage two at the Fighter Training Wing, she flew Kiran MK1 aircraft.

Antra Mehta is the first woman fighter pilot from Maharashtra, and she is the 10th woman pilot across India.

What You Should Know About Her

  • Antra Mehta is the first woman fighter pilot from Maharashtra and the tenth woman fighter pilot in India.
  • Antra hails from Nagpur in Maharashtra.
  • She is an engineer and also a national level basketball player. 
  • Currently, she can fly aircraft like Pilatus PC7 and Kiran MK1. 
  • She has been trained at the Air Force Academy, Hyderabad. 

She completed her schooling from Mount Carmel High School and her engineering from Shri Ramdeobaba Kamla Nehru College of Engineering. She, as reported by TOI, always aspired to join IAF.

Also Read: Letter Seeks NHRC’s Intervention In Detention Of Women Activists

The First Batch Of Women Fighter Pilots

Bhawana Kanth, Mohana Singh and Avani Chaturvedi were the first women to be inducted as women fighter pilots in the IAF. For the first time, when this position was opened for women, six women had entered the training but only three could qualify for further levels.

It was in 2015 when the then Defence Minister Late Manohar Parrikar had issued a statement approving induction of women as fighter pilots in the IAF. Manohar Parikar had described the trio’s induction as ‘Red Letter Day’ and said that his ministry is working towards bringing total gender parity in the armed forces. “We feel quite fortunate at being the first ones. Anybody could have got the opportunity, but we have got it. We are very happy,” said Bhawana Kanth when she became the first woman to be commissioned in IAF.

Among these three women, Flight Lieutenant Bhawana Kanth became the first woman fighter pilot who is capable of undertaking any mission during the daytime.

Picture Credit- Times Of India

Also Read: Indian Air Force: Eight Women Fighter Pilots Deployed As On July 1

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