Flying Officer Avani Chaturvedi has scripted history by becoming the first Indian woman fighter pilot to fly solo. Now, she has created another record by becoming the first woman pilot of the Indian Air Force who completed a solo flight on a MiG-21 Bison fighter aircraft. She achieved this feat over the Jamnagar base in Gujarat.
24-year-old Avani comes from a small district of Madhya Pradesh. Here are few inspiring facts about the Flying Officer.
She completed her training at Hyderabad Air Force Academy. Her inspiration to fly in the skies came from her brother. Her brother is a Lieutenant in the Indian Army.
Avani is one of the three women in the first batch of IAF’s female pilots. Bhawana Kanth and Mohana Singh were also inducted in Indian Air Force fighter squadron on 18 June 2016 along with Avani.
Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar formally commissioned all the three pilots.
In other countries such as Britain, United States, Israel, women were already allowed to fly fighter jets. With women IAF pilots also flying fighter jets, India has joined the global list of countries.
Avani’s father, Dinkar Chaturvedi, is an executive engineer in Water Resource Department of Madhya Pradesh government. Her mother is a homemaker.
Avani is a graduate in B.Tech (Computer Science). She drew inspiration from the flying club of her college and decided to join the IAF.
The pilot was always inspired by late NASA astronaut Kalpana Chawla.
Her mother shares how Avani used to say that she would become Kalpana Chawla one day. Avani’s mother said, “When astronaut Kalpana Chawla died in an unfortunate crash of her space-shuttle, I was very upset and was crying in front of the television. Then, Avani came to me and said Maa, don’t cry; I will become the next Kalpana Chawla.”
Talking about her future endeavours, she revealed that she wants to become a good fighter pilot.
“My dream is to become a good fighter pilot, on whom my seniors can rely when it comes to flying live operations. I want to fly the best fighter aircraft and learn more and more each day,” – Avani Chaturvedi
Currently, the 24-year-old pilot is posted at No. 23 Squadron (Panthers). She would be completing her stage-3 training at Bidar in Karnataka next year. Once she completes her training, she would be able to fly fighter jets like Sukhoi and Tejas.
The 24-year-old is an inspiration. At such a young age, she is flying one of the toughest aircraft in the world. She is working hard in order to accomplish her dreams. The young girl breaking stereotypes is an inspiration for all young aspirants. We are proud of her.
More power to you girl!
Picture Credit: News 18
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