Lt Vijaya Devi: Once a stranger to the sea, now circumnavigating the globe

Landlocked Manipur is agog about a woman who had never seen the sea before she joined the Indian Navy and now on a voyage to circumnavigate the globe.

Published: 13th September 2017 03:38 PM  |   Last Updated: 13th September 2017 05:52 PM   |  A+A-

Vijaya (second from left) will set out on the sail-round-the-world voyage on September 9 | EPS

Express News Service

GUWAHATI: Landlocked Manipur is agog about a woman who had never seen the sea before she joined the Indian Navy and now on a voyage to circumnavigate the globe.

Lt Shougrakpam Vijaya Devi is a member of India’s first ever all-woman crew that set out on the sail-round-the-world voyage on September 9 on a indigenously made sail boat named INS Tarini. The six-member team is led by Lt Commander Vartika Joshi. The other crew members of Navika Sagar Parikrama are Lt Commander Pratibha Jamwal, Lt P Swathi, Lt Payal Gupta and Lt B Aishwarya.

The crew members will be back home in March 2018. 

For Vijaya Devi it has already been quite a journey, having overcome a phobia of open water. “In our region, there is no sea. So, it is only after my selection in the Indian Navy that I saw the sea and learnt how to swim. But initially, I used to get drowsy and nauseated at the sight of sea water. I am not afraid now,” the woman from Manipur said.

Vijaya Devi first aspired to be an Army officer. She says it was destiny that steered her to a career in the Navy.

Lt Vijaya with PM Modi | EPS

“The Navy was not in my scheme of things. I always wanted to join the Indian Army. Upon finishing my post-graduation from Delhi University, I came across an Indian Navy advertisement and applied. I cleared all the tests to be where I am today,” she said.

Lt Vijaya Devi has already become quite a star in her home state, known for its women achievers like boxers Mary Kom and L Sarita Devi and weightlifter Kunjarani Devi.

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