Chaitanya Datla first civilian woman to sail Indian Navy warship (With image)

March 18th, 2009 - 6:05 pm ICT by IANS  

National Geographic New Delhi, March 18 (IANS) Chaitanya Datla, a 28-year old executive from Bangalore, is all set to create history by becoming the first civilian woman to sail on an Indian Navy warship.
Datla was chosen the winner of National Geographic Channel’s “Mission Navy: Lehron Ke Sartaj” from over 50,000 civilians who participated in the landmark docu-reality series, it was announced Wednesday.

Speaking about her achievement, Datla said: “I have always aspired to be a part of the armed forces and Nat Geo’s Mission Navy helped me realise this dream that was unfulfilled till recently. I also feel that this is a triumph for all the Indian women for whom nothing is impossible.”

From the entries received, five finalists, including three women, were selected for the mission after a series of physical and mental tests conducted by the navy.

Datla and the other finalists got the opportunity of a lifetime to be a part of the Indian Navy for over a month.

“It all started from being introduced to the academy life and undergoing basic training, to setting their first step ever on board an Indian naval ship,” a Nat Geo statement said.

“She not only got to learn the science behind the submarines and other warships but was also trained in beaching operations, got to perform the difficult jack stay, underwent a G-Force test, amongst other tasks,” the statement added.

At the end of the series, Datla “proved to be the most resilient, deserving and valiant of the five finalists”, the statement said, adding: “The decision by the Indian Navy was based on various exercises, tests and experiences the participants went through during the month long training period.”

Datla had also participated in Nat Geo’s “Mission Udaan: Inside the Indian Air Force” but was unable to make it to the final five.

“A true nature lover, she likes music - instrumental and western classical. Interested in philosophy and psychology, she likes getting into the depth of understanding human nature and behaviour,” the statement said.

On its part, “Mission Navy” showcased the hitherto uncharted world of the Indian Navy, replete with warships, submarines, missiles and much more. The series provided an insight into the lives of the brave men who patrol and protect the country through seven episodes.

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