Indian Navy Eves Break the Barriers; Fly an All-Women Maritime Surveillance Aircraft

Indian Navy Eves Break the Barriers; Fly an All-Women Maritime Surveillance Aircraft

Written By: / Friday, 05 August 2022 16:57

By Raju Vernekar
Mumbai, Aug 05:

Five women officers of the Indian Navy based at Naval Air Enclave, Porbandar (Gujarat) achieved the feat of completing the first all-women independent maritime reconnaissance and surveillance mission in the North Arabian Sea onboard a Dornier 228 aircraft.
The aircraft flown on Wednesday, was captained by the Mission Commander, Lt Cdr Aanchal Sharma, comprising pilots, Lt Shivangi and Lt Apurva Gite, and Tactical and Sensor Officers, Lt Pooja Panda and Sub-lieutenant  Pooja Shekhawat.
Indian Naval Air Squadron (INAS ) 314 is a frontline Naval Air Squadron based at Porbandar and operates the state-of-the-art Dornier 228 maritime reconnaissance aircraft. The squadron is commanded by Commander SK Goyal, a Qualified Navigation Instructor.

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INAS 314, the sixth Dornier aircraft squadron, was commissioned in November 2019. The squadron has a very strategic location and serves a crucial role in enhancing its surveillance footprint in the North Arabian Sea.
Calling the mission a symbol of ‘Nari shakti’ (women’s power), the defence ministry said the women officers received months of ground training and comprehensive mission briefings in the run-up to this historical sortie.
This first-of-its-kind military flying mission was unique and is expected to pave the way for women officers in the aviation cadre to assume greater responsibility and aspire for more challenging roles. It marked a unique achievement for the Armed Forces that a crew of only women officers undertook an independent operational mission in a multi-crew maritime surveillance aircraft, an Indian Navy statement said.
The Indian Navy has been a front-runner in driving transformation in the Armed Forces. Its impressive and pioneering women empowerment initiatives include induction of women pilots, selection of women Air Operations Officers into the helicopter stream, and conducting an all-women sailing circumnavigation expedition across the globe in 2018, the statement added.

About the Author

Raju Vernekar

Raju Vernekar

Raju Vernekar is a Media Professional based in Mumbai and is a regular contributor of Imphal Times. He had served as Chief Reporter at Free Press Journal (1996 – 2015 ). His Activities includes writing for different news papers, script writing/production for TV channels, Films Division. Writing poems in Marathi, Hindi, English, Guiding mass media students and helping people to solve their problems. Raju may be contacted at [email protected]

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