Female navy crew sailing world in aid of women empowerment in maritime sector

India's all-female navy crew is voyaging across the world to promote ocean sailing and women empowerment in the maritime field.

The crew of six, aged between 27 and 29, docked in front of the Marina building at the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town on Friday.

They have completed their third leg of their expedition, after 187 days on board the INSV Tarini vessel.

They set off from Goa, a state on India's West coast, on 10 September last year. They visited Australia, New Zealand, and the Falklands before arriving in the Mother City.

The boat’s skipper Lieutenant Commander Vartika Joshi, and her crewmate Lieutenant Commander Patrapalli Swathi joined CapeTalk's Pippa Hudson in studio.

The pair explain that they sailed for three years in preparation for the grueling voyage.

The Indian Naval Sailing Vessel Tarini is a sloop. The boat is 17 metres long, 5 metres wide and a mast that is 25 metres high.

Lieutenant Commander Vartika Joshi

She weighs 23 tonnes (23000 kilograms). She's been specifically built to circumnavigate the globe.

Lieutenant Commander Vartika Joshi

It's been almost 187 days from home but we say that Tarini is home away from home.

Lieutenant Commander Vartika Joshi

It was a few miles off Cape Horn that we encountered a massive storm. The winds rose and it was almost like watching movie.

Lieutenant Commander Patrapalli Swathi

There has to be a time when India sees females taking part in ocean-going expeditions.

Lieutenant Commander Vartika Joshi

The Prime Minister of India has been a major supporter of our voyage, which is in line with the government's policy of women empowerment.

Lieutenant Commander Vartika Joshi

We are trying to set an example. We really want women to [set aside] their gender and do whatever they want. The boat doesn't understand if [the crew] is male or female.

Lieutenant Commander Patrapalli Swathi

Take a listen to the inspiring story:


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