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Suryakant Jena

Bhubaneswar: Hailed rightly as 'Indian space woman', she is an epitome of success for millions of women across the globe. Meet Odisha-born entrepreneur Susmita Mohanty, who is now one of the most powerful personalities in the world finding a place in BBC's 100 most influential women.

Known for revolutionising the influence of women in the space industry with her own Earth2Orbit, India’s first private space start-up, Susmita's inclusion in the prestigious BBC list released recently, can certainly be tagged as one of her many marquee achievements. A daughter of former ISRO scientist, Nilamani Mohanty, born in Cuttack of Odisha, Susmita has featured among 100 young innovators in the world and featured on the cover page of Fortune Magazine.

Completing her education from prestigious institutions such as India’s National Institute of Design, International Space University in France and Sweden, Susmita also has a distinction of working with NASA and has consulted with European Space Agency (ESA) and even ISRO, among other space organisations.

But not just in space sector, Susmita, a fierce advocate of climate change, she has been actively working to use space technology as an asset for monitoring climate change. In 2005, she was honoured with the International Achievement Award for promoting cross-continental cooperation through her orbital enterprise and was also voted as one of the “25 Indians to Watch” by Financial Times’.

On her views on climate change, BBC quotes her as saying, "I fear that in three to four generations our home planet will not be very habitable anymore. I hope that humanity will wake up to a Greta-esque urgency for climate action."

Interestingly, Susmita was appointed as the chairperson of ‘Mo School’ initiative by Odisha Government in 2017. On her success, the CM had once said, "Dr Susmita Mohanty symbolises the ‘Mo School’ initiative, she is an example of what every Odia girl and boy can aspire and achieve given the right support."

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