Two Punjab pilots part of IAF's first all-women crew to fly Mi-17 chopper

PTI Chandigarh May 27, 2019, 10.59 PM(IST)

Flt Lt Parul Bhardwaj (Captain), Flying Officer Aman Nidhi (Co-pilot) and Flight Lieutenant Hina Jaiswal (Flight Engineer). Photograph:( ANI )

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Flight Lieutenant Parul Bhardwaj (Captain), Flying Officer Aman Nidhi (co-pilot) and Flight Lieutenant Hina Jaiswal (Flight Engineer) flew the chopper, which took off from a forward air base in South Western air command, a defence release said.

Two women IAF officers from Punjab were part of the country's first all-women crew to fly a medium-lift helicopter Mi-17 V5 on Monday.

Flight Lieutenant Parul Bhardwaj (Captain), Flying Officer Aman Nidhi (co-pilot) and Flight Lieutenant Hina Jaiswal (Flight Engineer) flew the chopper, which took off from a forward air base in South Western air command, a defence release said.

"The all-women crew flew a Mi-17 V5 helicopter for a Battle Inoculation Training mission taking off and landing from restricted areas at a forward airbase in South Western air command," it said.

Flt Lt Parul Bhardwaj hails from Mukerian in Punjab and is incidentally also the first woman pilot to fly the Mi-17 V5, while Flight Lieutenant Hina Jaiswal from Chandigarh is the first woman flight engineer of the Indian Air Force (IAF), the release said.

Flying officer Aman Nidhi hails from Ranchi, Jharkhand and is also the first woman IAF pilot from the state, it added.

The pilots had undergone their basic flying training at the Helicopter Training School at Air Force Station Hakimpet followed by advanced training at Air Force Station Yelahanka.

The helicopter was certified airworthy by Squadron Leader Richa Adhikari the unit Engineering officer, the release said.

This is yet another achievement of women officers in the IAF, it added.