Girl from Mirzapur’s Brahmin school, Sikh college will be India’s 1st Muslim female fighter pilot

Her entire education has happened in government schools. “I completed my Class 10 from Pandit Chintamani Dubey Inter College. Being a science enthusiast I had no options to pursue further education in my village. Thereafter I went to the city. I studied at Guru Nanak Girls Inter College.”

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By: Dharmendra Rajpoot | MIRZAPUR, UTTAR PRADESH
Updated: 23 December, 2022 1:47 pm IST

On December 27, the National Defence Academy will get its first Muslim trainee pilot. Sania Mirza, a resident of Jasovar village under the Mirzapur Dehat in Uttar Pradesh, cracked the exam to enter India’s elite defence training body NDA on her second attempt. She will be posted in NDA Khadakwasla in Pune.

Her entire education has happened in government schools. “I completed my Class 10 from Pandit Chintamani Dubey Inter College. Being a science enthusiast I had no options to pursue further education in my village. Thereafter I went to the city. I studied at Guru Nanak Girls Inter College.”

Mirza is also an example of how girls from small towns and villages who have done their education in government schools can enter elite institutes and studying in Hindi medium is no impediment in fulfilling one’s dreams.

Speaking of her struggle she said,  “I could not get a seat in the first attempt but I have found a place in my second attempt.” Only two seats were reserved for women fighter pilots in the National Defence Academy 2022 exam.

In the National Defence Academy 2022 examination, there were a total of 400 seats, out of which 19 seats were reserved for women. Of these only two seats were reserved for fighter pilots – one of which was cracked by Mirza.

Mirza has always aspired for excellence and wanted to become an Engineer as a child. She has been a District UP board topper and a school topper.  After that she started her preparations at Centurion Defence Academy.

Mirza said she drew inspiration from the story of Avani Chaturvedi, who was declared the first female fighter pilot in 2015. “I was so disheartened to know that before 2015 there were no female fighter pilots. I was inspired by  Flight Lieutenant Avani Chaturvedi and wanted to do something similar so that I could also become an inspiration for women.”

She said that support of her parents was instrumental in her success story. “If you see in my village, most women only study till 12th. They do not opt for higher education. Parents prefer to spend money on their dowry instead of their education. My parents never forced me to get married and assured me that they would support me in my academic pursuits.”

Her mother got extremely emotional while interacting with the media. “All our struggles have borne fruit today,” she said.

Now, Mirza will undergo training at the NDA for four years before she is commissioned as a pilot in the IAF.

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