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Mumbai Girl Aarohi Pandit Becomes The First Woman To Cross The Atlantic Ocean Solo

  • IWB Post
  •  May 14, 2019

Making the nation proud, a 23-year-old pilot, Captain Aarohi Pandit from Mumbai, became the world’s first woman to cross the Atlantic Ocean solo in a Light Sports Aircraft (LSA), on Tuesday.

Achieving the feat around midnight, Aarohi landed her tiny aircraft at Iqaluit Airport in Canada, after a grueling 3,000 km long flight, under adverse and extreme weather conditions following take-off from Wick, Scotland (United Kingdom), taking brief stopovers in Greenland and Iceland.

Talking about Aarohi’s achievement,  Lynn de Souza, head of Social Access, a not-for-profit communications firm which organised and sponsored the expedition, said, “This is part of her ongoing year-long global circumnavigation flight which was launched wither friend Keithair Misquitta on July 30. Aarohi continued solo from the UK to Canada, and they will return to India by July 30, 2019. En route, she set another world record as the first woman pilot to fly solo above the treacherous Greenland ice-cap in an LSA, and is due for at least half a dozen other records by the time she reaches India.”

A commercial pilot and LSA license holder, Aarohi along with her best friend Keithair Misquitta left India on the Women Empower (WE) Expedition in the tiny aircraft named ‘Mahi’, which is single-engine Sinus 912, weighing a little over 400 kg or nearly equivalent to a Bullet motorcycle. For this remarkable feat, Aarohi underwent rigorous training for seven months which was scheduled in India, Greenland, Siberia, and Italy over oceans, high altitude, snow, extreme weather conditions, and different terrains that tested her physical and mental capabilities.

During their journey, Pandit and Misquitta flew over Punjab, Rajasthan, Gujarat, then to Pakistan, where they landed by making it the first civilian LSA flight to land in the neighbouring country since 1947. From there they went on to to Iran, Turkey, Serbia, Slovenia, Germany, France and the UK.

After landing in Iqaluit, an excited Aarohi Pandit proudly exhibited the Indian tricolour presented to her by the Indian Ambassador to Canada Vikas Swarup, said Lynn.

Sharing her sentiments, Aarohi said, “I am so honoured and grateful I could do this for my country and for women everywhere… Flying over the Atlantic Ocean is a humbling experience. It’s just you and your little plane, the light blue sky above and dark blue see or shining white ice below.”

H/T: India Today 

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