Capt Shiva Chouhan First Woman Officer Deployed at Siachen Glacier
Captain Shiva Chouhan from the Corps of Electronics and Mechanical Engineers of the Indian Army has become the first woman officer to be operationally deployed at the Kumar Post in the Siachen Glacier, known to be the highest battlefield in the world, which is located at an altitude of 15,632 feet. Siachen is known for its biting cold where night temperatures are close to -25°C.
Women have been making massive strides and leaving their footprints in the Indian Armed Forces over the last few years and With this feat, Captain Shiva Chouhan has also made history.
The Kumar Post on Siachen Glacier is named after Col Narendra (Bull) Kumar, the noted Army mountaineer who led the first expedition to Siachen before India launched Operation Meghdoot in April 1984 to capture the glacier.
She bagged the frontline post on 2 January 2023, after rigorous training and an arduous climb at the Siachen Battle School where she trained alongside other men personnel of the Indian Army. The training consisted of endurance training, ice wall climbing, avalanche and crevasse rescue and survival drills. She will be leading a team of combat engineers at the Kumar post for a period of three months. Her team will be responsible for numerous combat engineering tasks.
Captain Chouhan, who hails from Rajasthan, is a Bengal Sapper. The team of Sappers, under her leadership, will be responsible for numerous combat engineering tasks at the glacier. She completed her schooling in Udaipur and holds a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering from NJR Institute of Technology, Udaipur. Since her childhood, she was motivated to join Indian Armed Forces and worked hard to achieve her dreams. She also showed exemplary performance during training at OTA, Chennai and was commissioned into the Engineer Regiment in May 2021.
Displaying spirit and perseverance, she successfully led a cycling expedition from Siachen War Memorial to Kargil War Memorial in July 2022, covering a distance of 508 km.
Her video also got viral on social media in which Captain Chouhan is seen walking over a thick blanket of snow at Siachen, where the temperature can dip to minus 60 degrees Celsius.
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh congratulated the captain in a tweet and wrote: “Excellent news! I am extremely happy to see more women joining the Armed Forces and taking every challenge in stride. It is an encouraging sign. My best wishes to Capt Shiva Chauhan.”
Business tycoon Anand Mahindra shared her video and tweeted, “Shiva Shakti! We’re cheering her on and praying for her success & safety. May she bury gender stereotypes deep in the Siachen Snow.”