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Captain Radhika Menon becomes the first woman to receive the award for Exceptional Bravery at sea, challenging the stereotype that bravery is only associated with men.
In June last year, seven fishermen were on a fishing boat ‘Durgamma’ that was caught in a storm after enduring engine failure and loss of anchor. The boat had drifted from Kakinada in Andhra Pradesh to Gopalpur in Odisha. Their food supplies had been washed away and they were surviving on ice from cold storage.
While back home, their families were praying for a miracle to see their loved ones, these fishermen who were aged between 15 and 50 years had lost all hopes for survival.
Their ordeal came to an end when Radhika Menon, first woman Captain of Indian Merchant Navy spotted them.
Radhika Menon was at the helm of the oil tanker- Sampurna Swarajya and spotted the vessel 2.5 km away. “Through wave heights of more than 25 feet, winds of more than 60 knots and heavy rain, on 22 June, the second officer on the Sampurna Swarajya spotted the boat 2.5 kilometres away, off the coast of Gopalpur, Odisha. Captain Menon immediately ordered a rescue operation, utilising the pilot ladder and with life jackets on standby,” said the Shipping Ministry in a statement.
The Government of India nominated Radhika Menon who became the first woman to receive the award for Exceptional Bravery at sea from the International Maritime Organization (IMO) in July.
The IMO award for Exceptional Bravery at Sea, instituted in 2007, is annually given to persons who perform acts of exceptional bravery and courage in attempting to save life at sea or in attempting to prevent or mitigate damage to the marine environment, often at a risk to their own lives.
Radhika Menon is a resident of Kodungallur in Kerala. Five years ago she became the first woman to captain a ship of the Indian Merchant Navy.
When asked about her exemplary courage in the rescue operation, Radhika said to the Times of India,“It is a maritime obligation to save souls in distress at sea and, as a seafarer and master in command of my ship, I just did my duty,”
While women have now shifted their roles from household chores to excelling in diverse professions and business, bravery is still not a virtue traditionally associated with women. There are superheroes who save lives but no super ‘heroines’. Radhika Menon has challenged this stereotype and set an example for women all over the world.
We felicitate and salute Radhika for her efforts and hope that this is just the beginning to many more super heroines from India!
Image Source: Youtube
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"There is a story and a vision which makes us gravitate towards cinema. Even as we worked as assistants on ads, we realised that cinema was our true calling," say Gunpreet Kaur Mann and Deepali Singh Raseen.
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A ‘thank you’ makes a lot of difference in the way any woman in your life sees herself in your eyes. It might even mean the world to her.
I have not received any appreciation in the past. Probably never will. This is the experience of ample women across the globe. The expectation to be thanked for all the sacrifices she makes to keep others happy has faded. Yet the urge to hear few words of acknowledgement always lingers.
There is never a day when she pushes off her own burdens. She knows not to give up on people she loves. Women in general, are givers by nature and hence, give without asking anything in return. They have been the care givers and lovers since centuries however receive no appreciation.
It will mean the world to your mother if you answer her calls. If your sister seems lost give her a hug and assure her about her strengths. Tomorrow, there might come a day when you would have to make your daughter feel empowered with few words of wisdom every now and then. For the children to feel wanted and loved, you must be able to spare some quality time with your wife and be present in the moment.
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