Women in India have been making their mark in the aviation industry in exemplary ways. From Captain Zoya Agarwal becoming the first woman commander of Air India to command a flight over the North Pole to Captain Monica Khanna saved the lives of 185 passengers after the engine caught fire mid-air, Indian women pilots have been soaring high and beyond. As their tribe increases, the country now stands at the top spot in the world by maintaining the most number of female pilots.
As of 2022, India is home to the maximum number of female commercial pilots globally with 12.4 per cent followed by Australia which ranks second with 7.5 per cent.
Rise Of Indian Female Commercial Pilots
Recently, the Government of India made an announcement on its official social media page revealing that India has now become the topmost country in contributing to female commercial pilots in the world.
“Indian women fly high. Indian women are leading the most female commercial pilots in the world,” tweeted MyGovIndia by sharing a picture of statistics.
As per the data released by the government, India is home to 12.4 per cent of female commercial pilots. Australia stands second with 7.5 per cent. Canada ranks third with 7 per cent, followed by the United States and the UK with 5.5 per cent and 4.7 per cent respectively.
Indian female commercial pilots make up 20.6 per cent of all pilots in India. Globally, the number of female commercial pilots is 3 per cent. With more women joining both the civil and military aviation industries in India, the country is fast becoming home to the largest female-growing aviation market in the world.
India had long surpassed the global average in hiring women female pilots. The country’s efforts in encouraging more women to join the aviation industry have been bearing fruit with the number increasing every year.
Indian Women Flying High
Female pilots in the country, irrespective of their military or commercial status, have been putting the country’s mark on global standards with their achievements in the recent past.
Recently, Squadron Leaders Swati Rathore and Parul Bhardwaj scripted history by flying Chinook helicopter units in the eastern and northern sectors near the Indo-China border, a responsibility which was not assigned to female pilots earlier by the IAF.
On the commercial front, Captain Monica Khanna, who has had a successful flying career so far, further proved her mettle through her professionally smart and cool-headed approach by making an emergency landing and saving the lives of 185 passengers after the engine caught fire mid-air. In another instance, Captain Mahesweta Chakraborty grabbed international headlines after she successfully spearheaded a rescue operation in Ukraine by bringing back more than 800 students from the Ukrainian border during the onset of the war.