Sub Lieutenant Shivangi has become the first female pilot to join the Indian Armed Forces. Shivangi, only 24, is set to join the Navy on Monday.
As of 1992, India’s Navy did not allow women to serve except for in medical services cases. Women are now allowed to serve in non-medical services cases as well. Shivangi will be flying a Dornier aircraft that is used for transport for the Navy. This aircraft is also used for rescue missions and medical evacuation.
Shivangi has wanted to be a pilot since she was young. She completed a mechanical engineering degree at the Sikkim Manipal University of Technology. A navy recruiter came to her college, which sparked her interest in joining. They showed a presentation about what life is like in the Navy which seemed very intriguing to Shivangi. She decided she wanted to join the navy to become a pilot and she dropped out of college. She has been fulfilling her dream of being a pilot ever since.
Shivangi has paved the way for other female pilots; two more women are set to join the Navy as pilots on December 21. Although these women are making incredible strides, they are still only allowed to fly transport planes, and are not allowed to go aboard ships. Since 1992, women in India have been able to fill various roles within the navy, including air traffic control, education, and training. The glass ceiling has been broken somewhat, but there is still a lot of room for improvement.