Sub-lieutenant Kumudini Tyagi and Sub-lieutenant Riti Singh scripted history after they became first-ever women officers to fly helicopters from the deck of Indian Navy warships. In the naval service, women officers were traditionally restricted to fixing the aircraft.

On Monday, Tyagi and Singh passed out of the Navy’s Observer Course following a felicitation ceremony held at INS Garuda. The two computer science engineering graduates joined the Indian Navy in 2018.

Besides Tyagi and Singh, two more women and three Indian Coast Guard officers were among 17 graduated as “observers” at the Southern Naval Command air base.

Hyderabad-based Sub Lt. Singh is a daughter of a former naval officer, while her grandfather served the Indian Army. “It is a dream come true moment as joining the Navy was a long-cherished dream for me,” she said as quoted by The New Indian Express.

Ghaziabad-based Sub Lt. Tyagi explained what inspired her to join the combat role in the Indian Navy.

“The news about Lt Kiran Shekhawat, a woman officer who laid down her life in an accident involving a Naval aircraft in 2015 had motivated me to join the Navy. Navy personnel work on the land, air and water and I wanted to take up the challenging role,” she said.