Lt. Cdr Vartika Joshigbs17
Naval Architect, Indian Navy
Joined the Indian Navy as a Naval Architect in 2010. She hails from the foothills of the Himalayas in Uttarakhand and graduated in Aerospace Engineering prior to joining the forces. Her parents are both educationists in Uttarakhand and her brother is working as electronics engineer in Netherlands. After completion of basic training at Indian Naval Academy Ezhimala and specialized post graduate diploma in Naval Construction at IIT, Delhi, she was appointed in Ship Building Centre, Visakhapatnam as a planner for Nuclear Submarine Arihant.
Her interest in the oceans made her to volunteer for circumnavigation in 2015. She participated in a transatlantic expedition from Rio de Janeiro to Cape Town on completion of the Cape to Rio Race 2014. During the same year she also sailed under Capt. Dilip Donde from Port Blair-Vizag-Chennai-Kochi circumambulating the Indian peninsula as part of celebrations towards 100,000 nautical miles completion of INSV Mhadei. She thereafter was appointed in INS Mandovi, Goa in 2015 to undergo training for the All-women circumnavigation of the globe. After a rigorous training program conducted at various naval schools and onboard INSV Mhadei under Capt Donde, she was appointed as the first skipper of the INSV Mhadei on 08 Feb 2016. She led her team comprising of five other female officers and sailed INSV Mhadei and subsequently sister vessel Tarini for over 20000 nautical miles before embarking on the first ever circumnavigation of the globe by an all women crew. She was awarded with the Chief of the Naval Staff Commendations in 2014 and 2016 for being the first of the women officers to undergo a grueling transatlantic voyage and successfully leading an all-female crew during their first ever independent open ocean voyage from Goa to Mauritius and back respectively. She has also been recognized as one of India’s 50 most powerful Changemakers by India Today.