The Indian Navy on Monday got its first woman pilot as Sub-Lieutenant Shivangi completed operational training in Kochi in Kerala.

Shivangi, who is from Bihar’s Muzaffarpur district, will fly the Naval Dornier surveillance aircraft. She received her “golden wings” from Vice Admiral AK Chawla, who said it was a front-line combat role. “The course curriculum is absolutely the same for male and female pilots,” Chawla said.

The pilot said it was a proud moment for her and her parents, Hindustan Times reported. “Women were always there in the Navy,” Shivangi pointed out. “They were not in the cockpit. Observers were there. This is something different... Woman in the cockpit for the first time.”

The pilot said she hoped her success would create more opportunity for women who want to join the armed forces. “Maybe they will start going for choppers and fighters,” she added.

Shivangi said she had been craving for this for a long time and was having trouble expressing her happiness. “I am looking forward to completing my third stage of training,” the pilot added.