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March 13, 2010

First Indian woman to ski on South Pole warmly received at Darjeeling

     Siliguri: Reena Kaushal Dharmshaktu, who became the first Indian woman to ski at the South Pole, arrived at her hometown in Darjeeling. Dharmshaktu, the 38-year-old adventure enthusiast and a resident of Delhi, was one of the eight-member Commonwealth Women's Antarctic Expedition 2009-10 that skied for over 900 kilometres along the icy surface of Antarctica. Talking to reporters here, Dharmshaktu, who returned to India on January 15, said that the motive behind the expedition was to promote women in this field. "Well, during the expedition, eight different people from eight different Commonwealth countries went skiing together from the coast of Antarctica to the South Pole. We were helping out each other. Nothing is impossible for women; if they are determined, they can do anything," said Dharmsaktu. Dharmshaktu described her journey as full of challenges but equally exciting at the same time. "The journey was good. It was challenging but it was beautiful at the same time. We were having a lot of tough time but we were also just enjoying being in Antarctica. We had to face a lot of challenges; the biggest challenge was the wind and cold," she said. The team was on the South Pole for 38 days braving blizzards, jet speed winds besides temperature of minus 40 degree Celsius, to achieve the great feat. Besides Dharmshaktu, the other members of the team were from seven countries - Brunei, Cyprus, Ghana, Jamaica, New Zealand, Singapore and Great Britain.
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