Asha was born to a family dedicated to the armed forces, right from her grandfather to her brother served in the Indian army. But when she expressed her desire to join the Indian Airforce and do her part of serving the country, she was laughed at.
Growing up Asha faced many difficulties and disparities. The family preferred her brother Karan over her. He was given more and stronger food from her share. Asha yearned for her father’s love and appreciation, but could never get it. There wasn’t a tinge of pride in her father’s eyes when she topped the boards or when she won numerous competitions. The woman of the house tried to curb her rebellious nature and groom her into being the ideal-woman, who wouldn’t speak up against anything.
All of their attempts failed as she wasn’t the one give in. The more they pulled her the further she soared. One day she expressed her desire to join the Airforce and also told them that she was selected for the written exam. Everyone laughed at her saying it wasn’t a woman’s cup of tea to take risks or fight. They brushed her away saying that, “women themselves need protection, how will they protect the country?”
Her mother asked her to give up all those dreams and that her place was in the kitchen, inside the four walls, not outside and definitely not in the sky. Despite their criticism she went on and gave the exam, to everyone’s surprise Asha topped. When this news came to her father’s knowledge he ordered to stay at home and that he would get her married off soon. Without another option Asha ran from her house and attended the personal interview. The interviewers were impressed with her aptitude and passion and she was finally sent to attend physical training at the academy. Although it was the last step towards her dream, it wasn’t an easy one. The training was rigorous and exhausting.
Asha worked harder than everyone. Though her performance was poor in the beginning she improved it with sheer dedication and hard work. She gave her best and came out with flying colors as a Flight Lieutenant. Unfortunately no one from her family came to attend her graduation ceremony.
A year later she was called to rescue the villagers of nearby village during the floods. Asha was nearly inexperienced for the task but she went for it as there was no one other than her nearby and by the time other pilots reach it would too late to rescue the villagers.
Asha without thinking twice took off and in the heavy rain and severely bad weather conditions flew to the village. She couldn’t land in the floods so threw ladders for the villagers to climb. After around six rounds from the village to her base she managed to save many of the villagers along with their cattle. The news of her bravery reached to her superiors and it was decided she would receive a bravery award.
An invitation was sent to her family stating that she was to receive bravery award from the President on the Republic day, there was a letter attached to it, written by her superior of notifying them of her brave deeds. Her family couldn’t believe their eyes, they realized their mistake of underestimating Asha. With a chest swollen with pride Asha’s father announced in the village of his daughter’s bravery and received a lot of appreciation.
Everyone in the family went to attend the award ceremony. Asha was standing in her uniform with her head held high. Everyone in the family was proud of her and her father realized that she has indeed made her family proud.
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