Asia’s first woman loco pilot Surekha Yadav has added another feather to her cap as she became the first female to operate the newly-introduced semi-high speed Vande Bharat Express train, the Central Railway said.
Piloted 450-km journey
She piloted the semi-high-speed train between Solapur station and Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT) in Mumbai on Monday. The train reached CSMT five minutes before the scheduled arrival, a Central Railway release said, adding that on completion of a more than 450-km long journey, Yadav was felicitated at platform number 8 at CSMT.
“Vande Bharat-powered by Nari Shakti. Smt. Surekha Yadav, the first woman loco pilot of Vande Bharat Express,” Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw tweeted.
Vande Bharat – powered by Nari Shakti.
Smt. Surekha Yadav, the first woman loco pilot of Vande Bharat Express. pic.twitter.com/MqVjpgm4EO
— Ashwini Vaishnaw (@AshwiniVaishnaw) March 13, 2023
She expressed gratitude for the opportunity
She expressed gratitude for being given the chance to operate the Vande Bharat Train. “She was thankful for giving her the opportunity to pilot the new age, state-of-the-art technology Vande Bharat Train. The train departed Solapur at right time and reached CSMT 5 minutes before time,” said Central Railways.
According to railway officials, loco piloting on new routes involves comprehensive learning and the crew has to remain vigilant at every moment during the train journey.
“The crew learning process involves signal observance, hands-on new equipment, coordination with other crew members, observance of all parameters for running of a train,” the release stated.
Became India’s first female train driver in 1988
Surekha Yadav became India’s first female train driver in 1988. Hailing from Satara in the western Maharashtra region, Yadav has won many awards at the state and national levels so far for her achievements.
Earlier on International Women’s Day (8 March), the Central Railways operated the prestigious Mumbai-Pune Deccan Queen Express and CSMT-Kalyan ladies’ special local train with all-women crews. On that day, Yadav operated the Deccan Queen with Sayali Sawardekar as an assistant loco pilot.
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