We all dream to achieve great heights in life, but some of us fly high, quite literally! And that’s what Ayesha Aziz will be doing. At 16, she got her student license to fly, and now at 20 she is India’s youngest pilot. What’s more, she is the first woman from Kashmir to do so. “More than being India’s youngest pilot, I am happy for having accomplished my childhood goal,” said Ayesha.
Based in Mumbai, Ayesha Aziz, hails from Khawaja Bagh in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district had a fascination for flights and airports since childhood. As a child she enjoyed take-off and landing of the plane, while her brother was opposite – he was scared and always used to sleep during the flight.
While she became more enthused and passionate about her dream, her parents supported her throughout the journey, guided her in all her pursuits. Her backbone was her father who encouraged her to enrol for flying classes at the young age of 15, just after finishing her class 10th standard exams. She flew Cessna 172R in January 2012.
Besides being a member of Indian Women Pilots’ Association, Ayesha has the Flight Radio Telephone Operator’s License (FRTOL) as well. She cleared the exam of Student Pilot License in November 2011 and obtained the Flight Radio Telephone Operator’s License in another examination.
Later on she joined Bombay Flying Club with 40 other students. Amongst the other three woman pilots in the Bombay Flying Club, Ayesha was the youngest and will became eligible to get the Commercial Pilot Licence (CPL) once she completes 80 hours of the total 200 hours of flying. She currently pilots single engine Cessna 152 and Cessna172.
While she was in 12th standard at Christ Church School, Mumbai, Ayesha has the rare opportunity to be a part of the three-member team selected to visit NASA. Meeting former astronaut John McBride there was a major high point of the trip. Also, during the visit she got the chance to that period, she participated activities like scuba diving, moon walking and bunny walk, which are part of training for astronauts.
Ayesha got the chance to meet her idol, astronaut Sunita Williams when she came to Worli in 2013 or 2014, and described her NASA visit to her.
Ayesha Aziz is the youngest Kashmiri girl to be awarded the student pilot license by Bombay Flying Club. She also succeeded in becoming the youngest pilot in India and the first female from Kashmir to have achieved this feat.
We wish all the luck and best wishes to Ayesha from the Kashmir Digest team and most of all from Kashmir.