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Women in Maritime

Women naval officers who circumnavigated globe, share their experiences in Pune event

(From right to left) Lt Commander Pratibha Jamwal, Lt Commander B Aishwarya, L Payal Gupta, Lt Commander Vartika Joahi and Lt SH Vijaya Devi at Connaught boat club on Tuesday. (SHANKAR NARAYAN/HT PHOTO )

The officers have completed India’s first all-women circumnavigation expedition of the globe by covering 28,000 nautical miles in 8.5 months.

A select group of women officers of The Indian Navy have made our country proud. They have successfully circumnavigated the globe on the vessel INSV Tarini.

“Circumnavigating the globe on the vessel INVS Tarini has taught us to value even the smallest of things. It has given us the confidence to deal with many things on our own,” said the women officers, who were in the city on Tuesday, as part of an event, organised by Indian Maritime Foundation.

The officers shared their experiences about the Navika Sagar Parikrama expedition. They have completed India’s first all-women circumnavigation expedition of the globe by covering 28,000 nautical miles in close to 8.5 months.

The crew comprised of Lieutenant Commander Vartika Joshi, who was the skipper, Lieutenant Commander P Swathi, Lieutenant Commander B Aishwarya, Lt Commander Pratibha Jamwal, Lt SH Vijaya Devi and Lt Payal Gupta. While the expedition started on September 10, 2017, the crew entered the home port of Goa on May 21, 2018.

Speaking about the expedition, Lieutenant Commander Vartika Joshi said, “We started our training in 2014. Before this we had never even stepped on a boat. After extensive training for around three years, we started for this expedition from Goa on September 10, 2017.”

She said that in the first leg they covered Goa to Frementle, in second leg from Frementle to Littleton, in third leg from Littleton to Port Stanley, in fourth leg from port Stanley to Cape town, in fifth leg from Cape town to Port Louis and in sixth leg from Port Louis to Goa.

Sharing criteria for circumnavigation for sailboat, Lt Cdr, Joshi said, “ The criteria includes that we must start and finish in the same port. We should not pass through any canals or straits and should cross all meridians at least once. We should cross the equator at least twice and should cover more than 21600 nautical miles.”

Lieutenant Commander Joshi said that the third leg from Littleton to Port Stanley was the most challenging.

“Leg III was the most challenging, as we faced severe storm. The winds were 70-80 KN (140 km/hr). During the storm, we were all awake for 24-25 hours at a stretch to ensure that we stir the boat through the storm. During his time, we were also struggling through cold temperatures as low as minus 7 to minus 8 degrees. There were frequent hail storms, “ she added.

Lt Cdr Joshi said that the expedition taught the crew the essence of team spirit.

Highlighting the issue of marine pollution, Lieutenant Commander Aishwarya B said, “We have sailed across the Indian Ocean, Pacific Ocean and Atlantic Ocean and we sawmaximum pollution in the Indian Ocean.” She added that thermocol, plastic bottles and oil spillage were seen maximum in the Indian ocean, which is a concern.

Source


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