Chennai: The Indian Navy`s sailing vessel Mhadei, which is manned by an all-women crew, entered Chennai Port on Saturday, after participating in the International Fleet Review 2016 in Visakhapatnam last week.
The vessel had left Visakhapatnam on February 9 and is scheduled to make stops at Chennai and Kochi ports before reaching her home port at Goa.
Lieutenant Commander Vartika Joshi, a Naval Architect, was appointed as the first woman Skipper of Mhadei on February 8 just prior to her return voyage.
The boat is crewed by Lieutenants P Swathi, Pratibha Jamwal (Air Traffic Control specialists), Vijaya Devi and Sub Lieutenant Payal Gupta (both Education officers).
The sixth member of the crew, Lieutenant B Aishwarya is an Engineer and is expected to join the boat next month.The women officers are training to form an all-women crew that would attempt to circumnavigate the Globe next year.
Mhadei will remain at the Ports of Chennai (Feb. 13-16) and Kochi (Feb. 23-26) on her return journey. Mhadei will eventually return to Goa on 02 Mar. This is the first all-women crew to man any ocean-going sailing boat of the Navy.
All the crew members are volunteers and are driven by their passion for adventure and a love for sailing and the seas.