India's Pride: Meet Four Air India Women Pilots Who Flew World’s Longest Air Route

11 Jan, 2021 12:50 IST|Sakshi Post

Women Pilots of Air-India created history as they flew over the North Pole. They successfully covered a distance of 16,000 kilometers, the world’s longest air route. They journeyed from San Francisco and landed safely at Kempegowda International Airport in Bengaluru.

This marks another historical momet for Captain Zoya as she is also the youngest woman pilot to fly a Boeing-777. Sharing their feeling on this occasion, Captain Zoya Agarwal said, "Today, we created world history by not only flying over the North Pole but also by having all women pilots who successfully did it. We are extremely happy and proud to be part of it. This route has saved 10 tonnes of fuel.”

This is the first time that a team of All-Women pilots from Air-India flew over the North pole air route. The team included Captain Zoya Agarwal, Captain Akansha Sonaware, Captain Shivani Manhas and Captain Papagari Thanmai.

Air India tweeted a welcome back message for the women and congratulated them on their successful flight. They even congratulated the passangers who were part of this journey.

“Welcome Home Capt Zoya Agarwal, Capt Papagiri Thanmei, Capt Akanksha & Capt Shivani after completing a landmark journey with touchdown at Bengaluru airport. Kudos for making Air India proud. We also congratulate passengers of AI176 for being part of this historic moment," read the post.

Capt Shivani Manhas shared that it was indeed a long journey, but also an exciting experience. "It was an exciting experience since it was never done before. It took almost 17 hours to reach here,” told Manhas.

After covering a distance of 16,000 kilometres in 17 hours, this flight landed at the Bengaluru airport on January 11. Flying over the North Pole route is a technically challenging and tricky task. 

Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Puri congratulated the women pilots. “Way to go girls! Professional, qualified & confident, the all women cockpit crew takes off from San Francisco to Bengaluru on Air India’s flight to fly over North Pole.Our Nari Shakti achieves a historic first.”

President of  Telugu Desam Party, N. Chandrababu Naidu, shared his congratulatory message as well and said the  all-women crew scripted history.

"Congratulations to Captain Zoya and her all-women Air-India crew that scripted history by flying the San Francisco-Bengaluru flight, over the North Pole. We're proud of you!"

Capt Agarwal motivated every woman to believe in themselves and not bring themselves down. “Women should have self-belief even if they face societal pressure not consider any task impossible,” she shared.

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