New Delhi: Lt. Bhavana Kasturi who became the first woman officer to lead an all-men Army contingent in this year’s Republic Day parade expressed how she felt being a contingent commander and how it was a huge honour for her. Talking about how saluting the President was the most memorable moment of her life, Kasturi stressed that nothing is impossible for girls as they have a lot of potential.

Lt. Kasturi said, “The moment when I saluted President was the most memorable moment of my life. Girls have got so much potential, nothing is impossible for us.”

Even more memorable was the enthusiasm & satisfaction in the eyes of my Jawans when we finished our parade and reached Red Fort. Hardwork of one year is not a small thing. I am sure we will win the best marching contingent this time

Lieutenant Bhavana Kasturi became the first woman officer to lead an all-men Army contingent in the Republic Day parade this Saturday.  She led the Army Services Corps contingent. “It’s a matter of great pride and honour to me and it’s a glory for us. Not just me, two of our JCOs and 144 jawans in the contingent are privileged and we will be part of history.”

She added that there was no discrimination in the Army on the basis of gender. “I want to tell young girls to chase their dream and not give up too soon.”

A display of women power in the armed forces was a major highlight of this year’s parade with a slew of women officers in leading roles. Among the many firsts was an all-women contingent of the Assam Rifles led by Major Khushboo Kanwar. Major Khushboo Kanwar led a contingent of the Assam Rifles, the oldest paramilitary force in the country. “Leading an all-women contingent of the Assam Rifles is a matter of great honour and pride for me. We have practised hard…I am a daughter of a bus conductor from Rajasthan and if I can accomplish this, then any girl can fulfil her dream,” she had said.

Captain Shikha Surbhi of the Army Signals Corps also performed a standing salute on a moving motorcycle.