Two Indian women will depart on a round-the-world flight on 5 April, on what’s believed to be the first Earth circumnavigation by an Indian woman pilot in a motorglider, a Pipistrel Sinus 912.
Captain Audrey Deepika Maben, India’s first woman motorglider pilot and first woman microlight flying instructor, and her 19-year old daughter, Amy Mehtawill, will start in New Delhi and plan to take 90 days with 54 planned landings over 21 countries.
The mission is called WE! (‘Women Empower’) and is not just about flying around the world – it is dedicated to raising awareness about the situation and equality of women in society. The WE! foundation will also collect resources for training of young female pilots.
The Sinus 912, nicknamed ‘Mahi’ (meaning ‘Great Planet Earth’ in Sanskrit), was chosen for its green, nature-friendly operation and flight characteristics.
Capt. Audrey Deepika Maben has already set a few records. As a cadet, she won the title of All India Best Girl Glider Pilot. Flying a microlight solo in Air Race India 2003, Audrey covered 2,400km in five days. Audrey also runs Aerosport Camps for children aged 8 to 15 years.