Thursday, August 10, 2017

'The first time I ever stepped onto a plane, it was to fly it': Meet the youngest female commander of a Boeing 777, who'd never been a passenger before she trained

She may be one of the only pilots in the world who had never herself been a passenger.
And at 30 years old, Anny Divya is also the youngest ever female commander of a Boeing 777 - an impressive feat given she grew up with few prospects, and had to learn English when she started training at 17.
'The first time I stepped onto an was aircraft to fly it,' the Mumbai-based Air India pilot tells MailOnline Travel. 'We belonged to a very humble background back then - we couldn't afford to travel in planes.'

The Boeing 777 Anny commands is the world’s largest twin jet, a model with the capacity for up to 396 passengers.
But getting to fly it was no easy ride.
Anny, who was raised in Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh, puts her initial success down to the support of her parents.
'From a very young age when I used to look up at the sky, I always wanted to touch it and fly through the clouds,' she says.
'But it was only after my mother said I should become pilot and that I started to realise the dream it was possible.'
Anny attended flying school at the Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Uran Akademi when she was just 17, earning herself a scholarship and completing her training at 19 years old.
hen she moved to Mumbai, where she landed a job at Air India.
'It was tough to adapt, to leave my parents and get out of my comfort zone,' she admits.
'Learning English and communicating with my peers was a struggle. But time and perseverance teaches you everything. So I am grateful to the people from whom I learnt every day.'
Anny gradually climbed the ranks at Air India, eventually completing advanced training in London where she first flew a Boeing 777.
'Flying is one profession where you better be good at what you do,' she remarks.
10/08/17 Enwick Elliot/Mail Online