On the 19th of February, 2018, Avani Charturvedi made history by becoming the first Indian female pilot to fly a fighter jet – the MiG-21.
Avani, along with two other women, Bhawana Kanth and Mohana Singh, became India’s first female fighter pilots in June 2016, showing their mettle, grit and fortitude and shattering stereotypes in both a country and a profession dominated primarily by men.
The 24- year- old is from the Rewa district of Madhya Pradesh. Her early education was in Deoland, a small town in Madhya Pradesh and she completed her B.Tech at the Banasthali University of Rajasthan, during which time she joined flight clubs and later passed the exam that enabled her to train for the Indian Air Force.
Following her recent achievement – which facilitated India’s induction into the register of countries in which women pilot fighter jets, such as the UK & USA, Pakistan and Israel – Avani is undergoing stage-3 training that will certify her to pilot fighter jets such as Tejas and Sukhoi.
While she isn’t busy making history, Avani enjoys playing chess as well as table tennis. Her interests are creative as well, showing up in her love for painting and sketching.
It’s women like Avani who embolden other women to reach for their goals, no matter how unattainable they may seem and to have the courage and spirit to fight it out; claim their place in the world and, perhaps, even in history.