Sirisha Bandla made headlines on July 11 when she became the second Indian-origin woman to travel to space as part of Virgin Spaceship Unity.

Indian women are indeed yearning for the stars these days. Today, women are excelling in many sectors, defying all preconceptions. The glass ceiling is progressively crumbling, and we are progressing, albeit slowly towards creating India, a country that provides equal opportunity to everyone, regardless of gender.

These women have defied society’s prejudices and carved out a place for themselves in an industry traditionally controlled by men — a reality that most women will face at some point in their lives. These women have left their imprint on the world of aerospace, and if they can achieve it, so can you.

Sirisha Bandla 

Bandla, born in Andhra Pradesh, will be one of six passengers on Virgin Galactic’s ‘VSS Unity,’ which will take off from New Mexico with the company’s creator Richard Branson.

Sirisha graduated from Purdue University with a Bachelor of Science in Aerospace, Aeronautical, and Astronautical Engineering in 2011. She later pursued her MBA at George Washington University in 2015.

After finishing her studies, she joined Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic. She is now serving as the Vice President of Government Affairs at the British-American spaceflight firm.

Kalpana Chawla

Kalpana Chawla was the first woman of Indian descent to travel to space in 1997. She worked on the US space shuttle Columbia as a mission specialist and primary robotic arm operator.

Chawla was born in Karnal, India, in 1982. She later graduated from Punjab Engineering College in Chandigarh with a Bachelor of Engineering in Aeronautical Engineering.

Chawla, who has gone down in history as the first woman to put India on the map in space exploration, began working for NASA in 1988. Kalpana Chawla’s contribution to NASA is recognized globally. And she will always be known as India’s first “first lady of space.”

These women are an inspiration for everyone; they have grown themself from nothing to a world-level recognition. Their hard work and ambitions help other people to dream as


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To know more about the struggles and journey of Indian astronauts feel free to go through this insightful discussion.

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Image Credits – Sirisha Bandla on Instagram


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