Women in Aviation India Celebrates Contribution of Women in the Aviation Sector at Awards 2023 ‘Giving Wings To Dreams’ 


Beti Ki Udaan, Desh Ka Swabhimaan

New Delhi: Women in Aviation India held its iconic Awards ceremony – Giving Wings to Dreams 2023 this Saturday at Roseate House New Delhi, felicitating around 30 women achievers who have contributed significantly to the aviation sector. These awards recognize excellence in diverse fields of aviation and help build a value chain, where achievers inspire the next generation. Women in Aviation India (WAI) is a dedicated and committed group of women representing diverse verticals of aviation with an aim to inspire more young girls to pursue aviation as a career. WAI’s ideology and slogan ‘Beti ki Udaan, Desh Ka Swabhimaan’ is inspired by the slogan ‘Beti Bachao, Beti Padao’ launched by the honorable Prime Minister of India. In line with Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s vision of a women-led development, Women in Aviation India is committed to build a strong foundation for the young girls by providing networking, mentoring and scholarship opportunities with a clear goal to encourage them to make aviation their preferred choice of career. 

The award ceremony took place in the august presence of distinguished Chief Guest, General (Dr.) V. K. Singh (Retd.), Hon’ble Union Minister of State, Ministry of Civil Aviation & Ministry of Road, Transport and Highways, GOI, who presented the awards to the women achievers. The event was also graced by the presence of eminent dignitaries including Shri Vikram Dev Dutt, Director General in the Directorate of General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), Smt. Neelu Kharti, Vice President, Communications, WAI and Smt. Kiran Jain, Vice President cum Treasurer, WAI.

Successful women aviators across categories of airside operations, terminal operations, ground support, engineering, passenger operations (ground handling) and flight operations were felicitated at the award function. New categories of aviation journalism, support services including marketing and IT were also introduced this year. Women shining in the arena of flying and defence services, inspiring today’s youth as role models were awarded at the ceremony. Women achievers from BCAS, DGCA, ATC and Pawan Hans were also recognized for their services. The Missile Woman of India, Ms. Tessy Thomas, an eminent Indian scientist and the first ever woman scientist to head a missile project in India, received a Lifetime Achievement Award for her invaluable contribution in the aeronautical space.

The selection process was led by an eminent jury comprising of stalwarts of the aviation industry Mr. Rajiv Nayan Choubey, IAS (Retd.), Admiral RK Dhowan, IAS, PVSM, AVSM, YSM (Retd.), Mr. Kapil Kaul, CEO & Director, CAPA India, Marcel Hungerbuehler, Aviation Expert, Mr. Vivek Atray, Ex-IAS, Gurjit Gill, Director, Global ACI ICAO AMPAP and Ms. Rathi Vinay Jha, IAS (Retd.), Former Secretary, Union Ministry of Tourism. The jury, after a thorough evaluation of nominations received from a wide spectrum, selected deserving achievers, employing a fair and unbiased selection process.

WAI has, in its quest to create awareness among young girls, prepared a booklet that enlists 60 unique jobs across the aviation industry like engineering, marketing & sales, wildlife hazard management, mobile solutions developer, communication, journalism and beyond. These booklets are distributed amongst the young participants at Girls in Aviation Day (GIAD) events, a WAI core initiative through which the team reaches out to thousands of young school girls, held across India every year. School girl attendees of the GIAD 2022 program participated in an essay competition wherein they shared their thoughts on why they aspire to be a part of the Indian aviation industry out of which 7 winners were selected and honoured as ‘Young Aviation Aspirants’ at the ceremony. 

The Chief Guest Gen. (Dr.) V. K. Singh (retd.), Union Minister of State, Ministry of Civil Aviation & Ministry of Road, Transport and Highways, while addressing the gathering at the event, applauded the efforts of Women in Aviation India and stated, “In the aviation sector, we boast of one of the highest number of female pilots globally.  The Women in Aviation India booklet released today underscores the diverse roles women can play in the aviation sector. In our evolving world, it’s crucial to inspire more women. By uniting efforts in both government and private sectors, we can pave the way for increased inclusivity. As we celebrate the achievements of women in aviation, let’s persist in reducing the gender gap. Congratulations to all the women who are winning the awards today and motivating women across the globe to take the highest position in whichever industry they are.”

Speaking on the occasion, Mrs. Radha Bhatia, President, Women in Aviation India chapter said, “As we head towards becoming a $5 trillion economy by 2024, India is amongst the fastest-growing aviation markets globally and is evolving into a major growth engine. It is time for all stakeholders to come together on one stage and support the education and training of girls who aspire to become pilots or other preferred skilled jobs in the industry. We, at Women in Aviation India are committed to build a thriving, interconnected ecosystem where one strong woman passes the baton of excellence to the next. Beti ki Udaan, Desh ka Swabhimaan is not just rhetoric but a clarion call. These awards do, just that. I am glad that after a very successful launch last year, we have now passed the baton with the second edition of these awards.”  

About Women in Aviation India 

Founded in 2015 in New Delhi, Women in Aviation (WAI) India is a non-profit organization dedicated to the encouragement and advancement of women striving for challenging and fulfilling careers in the aviation and aerospace industries. The India Chapter, supported by the Ministry of Civil Aviation, Government of India is a group of women who are stalwarts of the aviation industry, representing multiple fields & interests and are passionate to give back meaningfully to the future generation. Aligned with the policies and astute vision of the Prime Minister of India, WAI aspires to build a strong foundation for women by providing networking, mentoring and scholarship opportunities with a clear goal to encourage them to make aviation their preferred choice of career. 

For more information, please visit: www.indianwomenforaviation.in