IAF gets its first woman flight engineer

Flight Lieutenant Hina Jaiswal

Flight Lieutenant Hina Jaiswal   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

Flight Lieutenant Hina Jaiswal becomes the first woman flight engineer, breaching what until last year was the Indian Air Force's men-only club.

Commissioned in January 2015 to the IAF's engineering branch, she created history when she was chosen as the first woman candidate to pursue the elite course. On Friday, the Chandigarh-native completed the six-month course at 112 Helicopter Unit, Air Force Station Yelahanka, the Ministry of Defence said.

In her new role, Flt. Lt. Jaiswal will serve at IAF's operational helicopter units and serve in “demanding and stressful conditions from the icy heights of the Siachen glacier to the seas of the Andamans,” a statement said.

A flight engineer is a member of an aircraft’s flight crew and requires special skills for constantly monitoring and operating its complex systems.

Before doing the course, Flt. Lt. Jaiswal served as the chief of firing team and battery commander in a frontline surface-to-air missile squadron.

“The course includes gruelling training, where she (...) displayed unflinching commitment, dedication and perseverance,” the statement said.

The engineering graduate from Panjab University, who, as a child, had aspired to be a soldier and an aviator, described her achievement as a “dream come true”.

The IAF started commissioning women in the officer cadre in 1993 and now inducts them as pilots in various streams. The MoD has dedicated an entire day of Aero India 2019, starting next week, to women in the armed forces.

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Printable version | Aug 11, 2020 6:30:41 PM |

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