Creating history and a proud moment for India, Avani Chaturvedi became the first ever Indian women fighter pilot to fly a fighter jet solo.
Chaturvedi flew a MiG-21 Bison in her first training solo sortie, in Jamnagar, Gujarat on Monday.
Speaking to media, Air Commodore Prashant Dixit said, “It is a unique achievement for Indian Air Force and the country.”
It is pertinent to mention here that MiG-21 Bison has the highest landing and take-off speed in the world – 340 kmph.
She is from Rewa district in Madhya Pradesh. She was declared as the first combat pilot along with two of her cohort, Mohana Singh, and Bhawana Kanth. The trio was inducted into the Indian Air Force fighter squadron on June 18, 2016.
They were formally commissioned by then Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar.
Mohana Singh and Bhawana have also completed training to fly a fighter plane and will soon fly fighter planes. All three were given training in January.
The three women were commissioned as flying officers into the fighter stream after basic training in June 2016 on “an experimental basis” for five years initially.
Chaturvedi completed her training at Hyderabad Air Force Academy. She did her schooling from Deoland, a small town in Shahdol district of Madhya Pradesh. Completing her Bachelors in Technology from Banasthali University, Rajasthan in 2014, she passed the Indian Air Force exam.
Chaturvedi is inspired by her brother who is in the Army. She always wanted to conquer the skies and hence joined the Flying Club in her college.
Her father, Dinkar Chaturvedi, is an executive engineer in Water Resource Department of MP government and her mother is a home maker. Chaturvedi likes to play chess, table tennis and to do sketching, painting.
Chaturvedi’s achievement has put India on the list of the countries such as Britain, the United States, Israel, and Pakistan, where women are allowed to fly fighter jets.