Don’t underestimate the flair of an Indian woman, because she’ll do everything in her power to prove you wrong. Indian women have been breaking stereotypes since immemorial. Iron-willed and determined, several of these glorious Indian women have shattered social stigmas, raced towards their dreams, and have emerged as not only national but global achievers.
Gone are the days when only men were the riding ticket to success. Women are joining the club too and paving the way for gender neutrality in every field. After all, there’s more to her than just nurturing and beautifying. Put her on the battlefield and you’ll see her turn into a warrior – that’s the power she holds.
The last few decades have witnessed several Indian sheroes who have successfully put the country on the world map with their outstanding achievements. And today we are honoured to list 7 of the many of trailblazing Indian women that we can’t help but be proud of:
7 Glorious Indian women who excelled in their field and made India proud before the whole world
1. Kalpana Chawla
Since childhood, Kalpana always dreamt of life amongst the stars. So powered was her fascination for flying that her determination and hard work landed her in NASA Astronaut Corps. She was selected for the first mission that began on 19th November 1997, making her the first Indian woman ever to fly in outer space. However, it was on 1st February 2003, on her second mission that Kalpana along with her six crew members met an ill-fated end when the Space Shuttle Columbia carrying them disintegrated during re-entry into the Earth’s atmosphere.
As the nation watched her shuttle break into pieces, she pierced her glory and her dream to fly high into the heart of every Indian. Today, Kalpana is hailed as a national hero in India and will be remembered for her achievements in history. We feel pride in including her name in this list of glorious Indian women.
2. Neerja Bhanot
On 5th September 1986, when Pan Am Flight 73 was hijacked by a group of terrorists during a stopover in Pakistan, Neerja Bhanot, the Indian head purser didn’t think twice before putting her duty above her life. She helped the passengers escape through the emergency exit but was unfortunately shot by the terrorists during the process. A symbol of heroism and strong-will, Neerja Bhanot was posthumously awarded India’s highest peacetime gallantry, the Ashok Chakra Award and was felicitated with the highest honours around the world. Her name would always find a spot at the top of the list of glorious Indian women.
3. Shakuntala Devi
Human-computer, mental calculator, etc., were some of the many names Shakuntala Devi was bestowed with after the world noticed her special affiliation with numbers. Her speed of calculation was beyond explanation. She became a symbol of national glory when she stunned the experts by answering the multiplication of two 13-digit numbers in 28 seconds! An event that went on to earn her a place in The Guinness Book Of World Records. But did you know, Shakuntala Devi received no formal training in this feat and did roadshows with her father to display her mental calculation? Another woman to make the list of glorious Indian women, Shakuntala Devi is the rarest of gems India produced.
4. Mary Kom
Paving way for Indian women in boxing, Mary Kom coming from a rural town in Manipur not only broke stereotypes but made records for her outstanding contribution in the field. She became the first Indian woman boxer ever to qualify for the 2012 Summer Olympics, wherein she won the bronze medal. Following this, she became the first Indian boxer to get a gold medal in the Asian Games (2014) and the Commonwealth Games (2018) too. Holding several records to her name, the nation was elated to see her hold the Indian flag on the pedestal on international grounds!
In 2020, Mary Kom, or the Magnificent Mary as she was known as, was awarded India’s second-highest civilian award – the Padma Vibhushan for her winning streaks for the nation.
5. Gita Gopinath
The first Indian woman and the second Indian to have ever achieved this feat, Gita Gopinath was elected as the Chief Economist of the International Monetary Fund, an international organization consisting of 189 countries working towards reducing global poverty and financial stability. Director of the IMF’s Research Department and the Economic Counsellor of the Fund, she’s also a registered professor of International Studies and Economics at Harvard University.
6. Arunima Sinha
Nothing can stop you if you are determined to achieve your dreams and that’s exactly what kept Arunima Sinha moving forward. Despite facing a life-changing accident that resulted in her left leg being amputated below the knee, she went on to become the World’s first female amputee to climb Mt. Everest! Powered by her determination to do what she believes in, Arunima continues to scale new heights with her latest achievement being in 2019, when she completed the final summit of Mount Vinson in Antarctica.
7. Bhakti Sharma
On 10th January 2015, Bhakti Sharma, an open water swimmer became the first Asian and the World’s youngest ever to set a record in open swimming in Antarctic waters! At a temperature of 1 degree Celsius, she swam for 2.25 km in the Antarctic waters breaking the previous record held by British and American open water swimmers. Recognized for her achievement by the Prime Minister of India, Bhakti is also the youngest ever to have swum in all five oceans. Turning tides and how, Bhakti started swimming at the young age of 2 and today, holds several records that puts her on the global achievers list!
Inspiring, aren’t they? These are the golden seven of the many sheroes who made the country proud with their outstanding contributions. Not stopping at anything, they proved that anyone can be an achiever if they strive towards their dream with determination. They didn’t let the social stigmas and stereotypes come in between their aspirations, and today they are looked upon as symbols of national glory. Becoming an inspiration for every woman in India – they didn’t stop, so what’s stopping you?
Go chase your dream.