Despite limitations, Indian women have always stood for their rights to reach new heights. History shows a list of Indian women who have excelled in fields that were traditionally dominated by men.
Here's International Business Times India's list of five women who broke the gender barriers.
- Debjani Ghosh: First woman to become NASSCOM President
- Ayesha Aziz: India's first female pilot from Kashmir
PV Sindhu: The 1st Indian woman to win Olympic silver medal
It wasn't a failed return. She fought with tenacity. She was determined to perform the best in her first Olympics, but a little nervous by the burden of expectations of a billion hearts. In a pulsating final, she lost to Spain's Carolina Marin. But in Rio, the 21-year Hyderabad girl was scripting the history of her mother nation. Her silver medal was nothing less than a gold for her countrymen.
Pusarla Venkata Sindhu, commonly known as PV Sindhu, took Indian badminton to a global level at the Rio Olympics in 2016. The shuttler brought home the title of the first Indian woman to win an Olympic silver medal, and the fourth Indian to win a silver at the Olympics after Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, Vijay Kumar and Sushil Kumar. Sindhu is currently the world no. 4 in the BWF World Ranking for women's singles.
However, Sindhu's silver medal is the result of her hardwork and sacrifices. She credits her strict coach Pullela Gopichand, who identified her international caliber, as the man behind her success. In the pursuit of her sporting excellence, she didn't use her mobile phone for three months, says Gopichand. While following an exceptional fitness routine, she was never allowed to have junk food, especially in the wake of many doping cases coming out.
She won her bronze medal in the World Badminton Championship in 2013 and 2014, and an Arjuna award at the age of 18. From 2013 to 2015, she won Macau Open Grand Prix Open three times in a row. She received India's highest sporting honor Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award in 2016. Last year, Sports Ministry nominated PV Sindhu for Padma Bhushan.
There are only two Indian badminton players who won an Olympic medal. Sindhu and Saina Nehwal. Saina was the first India woman who won an Olympic bronze medal at the Beijing Olympics in 2012.
Sindhu's parents PV Ramana and P Vijaya were professional volleyball players. Her elder sister PV Divya was a national-level handball player but gave up her sporting career in order to become a doctor.
In 2017, she even launched a mobile app to interact with her. The app users get exclusive videos and other posts from Sindhu.
Next: Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw: First Indian businesswoman with $1 bn net-worth