Thursday, February 25, 2021

Woman leads guard of honour for the first time

Reading Time: 2 minutesIn a first, a woman officer from the Indian Air Force, Wing Commander Puja Thakur, led the ceremonial guard of honour presented to visiting US President Barack Obama at Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi on 25 Jan.

Thakur was seen – and heard – giving commands, which were followed by the national anthems of the US and India. The 21-gun salute boomed next.
Thakur then escorted Obama for the inspection of the tri-service guard of honour.
Thakur hails from Rajasthan and has served in the IAF for 13 and a half years and is an administrative officer posted at its publicity cell, DISHA, at the Delhi Air Headquarters in New Delhi.
She is also a para jumper.
Thakur told reporters after the ceremony that she felt proud.
“It is a proud moment. I hope it inspires more women to join the forces,” Thakur said.

“There is no difference between men and women in the forces,” she said.
The officer told NDTV that she came to know about her role in leading the guard of honour only a few days ago.
“Since the past few days, we’ve been practising for it. However, we start with our drill movements and ceremonials right from the first day of our training… And we are always prepared,” Thakur said.
She also said that her family is proud of her. Her father is a retired Colonel from the Indian Army.
Her leading the ceremonial guard of honour came as ‘nari shakti’ (woman power) was the theme for Republic Day parade this year where Obama was the chief guest. This Jan 26 was also the first time when women contingents of the army, air force and navy will march down Rajpath.
Another woman officer, Flight Lieutenant Smita Singh, was the supernumerary officer.

- Advertisement -

Related Articles


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here


Ep 9: What do young Indians want from love?

Growing up in Indian culture, most of us know that love has never been as popular as marriage. Even in the movies, the main...

Ep 8: Indian links in Indigenous Australian poet Ali Cobby Eckermann’s...

To celebrate NAIDOC week 2020 (between 8-15 November) I spoke to Yakunytjatjara poet Ali Cobby Eckermann about her time in India where she taught...

Ep 7: In the case of Sushant Singh Rajput

  The torrid and high-octane Sushant Singh Rajput case has been fodder for Indian people and press for the last few months. The actor’s tragic...

Latest News

former liberal staffer dhanya mani (1)

Dhanya Mani on speaking out: “It felt like a moral imperative”

  Trigger warning – sexual harassment The disparity between women and men in every workplace across Australia is well understood, but less understood is the disparity...

Rowing champ Gauri Kotera

  With a streak of wins behind her, 14-year-old Gauri Kotera is now among the top five rowers under 16, in the state of NSW. The...

Raising guide dogs – at home

  As the clock struck midnight this past New Year’s Eve, the Bhandari family in Sydney celebrated in a rather unique way: taking care of...
driving school instructor, sexual harassment

“Hard kisser or soft kisser?”, my driving instructor asked me

  Trigger warning - sexual harassment I needed to pass my driver's test because my learner's license expires in April. As someone who is employed full...

Review: The Big Day (Netflix)

  Reality shows about weddings are nothing new if you consider the success of productions like Say Yes to the Dress, Say I Do, and...