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15 ‘First’ Indian Women Who Made History in Various Fields

by Rishika Choudhury

Date & Time: Nov 24, 2022 3:00 PM

Read Time: 4 minute



These determined warriors, rocket scientists, and young athletes come from various regional and societal backgrounds across the country, and their success exemplifies the nation's in-built motto of "unity in diversity."

Dr Tessy Thomas



Thomas, also known as the "missile woman of India," comes from a humble background in Kerala and is the first woman in the field to lead the successful launch of the Agni-V missile project. Thomas is a scientist and the Director General of Defense Research and Development Organization's Aero Systems Division (DRDO).

Dipa Karmakar



Tripura, India's northeastern state, is home to the 29-year-old. She is also the country's first Indian gymnast to compete in the Olympics. Karmakar made her Olympic debut in 2016 and finished fourth in the finals.

Shanti Devi



Shanti Devi is a modern-day example of feminine strength in a highly male-dominated occupation. Shanti Devi, 55, has spent the last two decades working as a truck mechanic in the chaotic streets of Sanjay Gandhi Transport Nagar in New Delhi's national capital.

Deepa Malik



Deepa Malik is the first Indian woman athlete to win a Paralympic medal, in addition to being the President of the Paralympic Committee of India. At the age of 30, she began her sporting career and won a silver medal in shot put at the 2016 Summer Paralympics. Later that year, she won gold in the Javelin event at the Paralympic Grand Prix in Dubai.

Kavita Devi



Former Haryana cop Kavita Devi made history after she become the first Indian wrestler to feature in the Mae Young Classic event in 2017. Devi made headlines for taking on New Zealand's popular fighter Dakota Kai.

Usha Kiran



Kiran is the youngest CRPF officer who joined the 232 Mahila Battalion of the force in 2014, and after several years of training and service, she became the first woman to be inducted into the commando battalion for resolute action (COBRA) unit and is currently posted in Chhattisgarh’s insurgency-affected Bastar.

Hima Das



Das, also known as 'Dhing Express' is the first Indian woman athlete to clinch a gold medal in track event at the IAAF World U20 Championships. The 22-year-old also holds a national record in 400 meters sprint running with a timing of 50.79 seconds.

Gita Gopinath



American national Gopinath has Indian roots and is an economist by profession. She made the country proud by becoming the first woman Chief Economist at the IMF (International Monetary Fund).

Mithali Raj



Mithali is known as the "Sachin Tendulkar of Indian women's cricket," and she is the only woman batter in the country to have played more than 200 ODIs. The former India captain is also the leading run-scorer in women's international cricket.

Avani Chaturvedi



Flight Lieutenant Avani Chaturvedi of Rewa, Madhya Pradesh, becomes the first Indian woman pilot to solo fly a fighter jet. Previously, she and two female colleagues were named the first female combat pilots.

Mary Kom



Mangte Chungneijang Mary Kom became the country's first female Olympic boxing gold medalist. Former Rajya Sabha MP has been World Amateur Boxing Champion six times and recently competed in her final Olympics in Tokyo.

Garima Arora



Indian chef Garima Arora became the first Indian woman to win a Michelin star in November 2018. The 36-year-old enjoys massive popularity in the Indian households through TV reality show MasterChef India.

Arunima Sinha



The world's first female amputee to climb Mount Everest, Mount Kilimanjaro, Mount Elbrus, Mount Kosciusko, Mount Aconcagua, Mount Denali, and Mount Vinson. She has also represented her country at the international level in volleyball.

Kalpana Chawla



Now, who doesn't know the Indian-origin mechanical engineer and NASA scientist Kalpana, the first woman of Indian descent to travel to the space. Chawla created history as she flew on Space Shuttle Columbia as mission specialist in 1997.

Saina Nehwal



Indian shuttler Saina Nehwal holds multiple honours in international badminton and is the first Indian woman to secure rank 1 in the list of top woman shuttlers around the world. She further holds 24 international titles along with 10 Superseries titles.

Also Read: 20 Women Entrepreneurs, 20 inspirational and success Stories in 1 book

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