Indian Air Force Flight Lieutenant Swati Rathore is all set to script history by becoming the first woman to lead the flypast at the Republic Day parade on January 26 at Delhi’s Rajpath.
Hailing from a small village in Rajasthan’s Nagaur district, Swati completed her schooling from Ajmer. Having dreamt of becoming a pilot since a young age, Swati was selected in the IAF in her first attempt in 2014, while her brother was posted in the Merchant Navy.
In 2013, Swati appeared in the Air Force Common Admission Test. After clearing it, she was called for an interview by the Air Force Selection Board, Dehradun, in March 2014.
Among 200 female students from all over the country, only 98 were selected for screening. Only five students were left after the screening, in which only she was selected for the flying branch.
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Former Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje took to Twitter to praise Swati. Her message read “It is a matter of pride for all of us that the daughter of Veerbhoomi #Rajasthan and Flight Lieutenant of Air Force #SwatiRathore will lead the ‘FlyPast’ in the parade on Rajpath on the occasion of Republic Day. I wish her a bright future!"
Former deputy chief minister Sachin Pilot was also full of praises for the young pilot and said that her feat is a step towards women empowerment.
Her father, Dr. Bhavani Singh Rathore said, “My daughter has let me hold my head high. I am overwhelmed as the dream which she saw has turned into reality."
In a report by DNA, Rathore, who is a deputy director in the state’s Agriculture Department, also appealed to all parents to help their daughters fulfill their dreams.
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