Today, May 4th is an International Fire Fighters Day. On such an occasion, we will let you meet a woman who proved that gender can never decide what a woman or man should do. We are talking about India’s first woman firefighter Harshini Kanhekar. Presently Harshani is the deputy manager of ONGC’s Fire Services. Harshini says that her father has a lot of contribution to what she is today. Her 70-year-old father, Bapura Gopal Rao Kanhekar, is the retired engineer of the Water Resource Department of Maharashtra.
He has always been aware of education. This is the reason why after marriage, he encouraged his wife to continue her studies. He also encouraged Harshini to always give competitive level exams. It is worth mentioning that Harshini had a dream to join the Armed Forces.
But seems destiny had some other plans for her. She said,
“Papa took me to the Fire College in Nagpur. It was known that no girl had ever admitted there. People got shocked after seeing me there! They suggested me to join army or navy. This is a boys’ college, you can not study here. This thing pinched me somewhere deep and I decided that I will study here no matter what! UPSC examination had only 30 seats all over India. I gave the exam and passed. It was a big thing for me.”
Harshini did fire engineering course from Nagpur’s National Fire Service College. She was the first Indian woman who took admission in this course in 2002. Often people say that I’m courageous but it was all due to my father says Harshini. According to a report, in Kolkata Harshini stayed at gents hostel for 3 months all alone.