Seema Rao

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Seema Rao
Seema Rao
Seema Rao

Seema Rao, also known as India's Wonder Woman,[1][2][3][4] is India's first woman commando trainer,[5][6] having trained Special Forces of India for 18 years without compensation.[7] She is a pioneer in close quarter battle (CQB) [8] — the art of fighting in tight proximity — and is involved in training various Indian forces.[9] Her work was partnered by Major Deepak Rao, who received Presidential rank honor from the Indian President for pioneering close quarter battle training for Indian Army.[10][11]


Born to a freedom fighter of India, Professor Ramakant Sinari, Seema grew up committed to the cause of serving her country. Pursuing an education in medicine, she certified as a doctor in conventional medicine. Rao also has an MBA in crisis management. Teaming up with her husband, Major Deepak Rao, she contributed to training 15,000 soldiers in modern close quarter battle.[12][13]

Rao earned her Para Wings by skydiving in the Indian Air Force course. She is a combat shooting instructor, an Army mountaineering institute HMI medalist, and a 7th degree Blackbelt in military martial arts. She is one of a handful of instructors in the world authorised to teach Jeet Kune Do.[14] She has been a Mrs India World beauty pageant finalist, too. A professional martial combat exponent, her lineage traces to Richard Bustillo, original disciple of the legendary Bruce Lee's art of Jeet Kune Do.[15]

She is referred to as India's first woman commando trainer[16] and has had articles including those on women safety published on her.[17][18][19]

Work in combat modernization[edit]

Dr Seema Rao Woman Commando Trainer at Corps Battle School Northern Command Indian Army

Rao has been instrumental in modernizing combat shooting, having researched combat shooting methods and invented a new method of shooting called The Rao System of Reflex Fire[20][21] — an innovative method of shooting at close quarters. This method is patented (PP) and via trials has been found better than conventional shooting[citation needed] . After a thorough analysis, the method has been incorporated into relevant Indian Army commands with due credits, gaining three Army Commander citations to her credit along with her husband Deepak Rao.

Together the Raos are recipients of three Army Chief citations over 18 years contributions to training 15,000 soldiers[22] of forces in CQB. They have trained every elite Indian force including Indian Para Special forces, Commando wing, Corps battle schools, Academies & Regt centers, Navy MARCOS marine Commandos, NSG Black cat, Air Force GARUD, ITBP, Paramilitary, Police units. They were guest lecturers for National Police Academy, Army Officers Training Academy, etc. Having taken to CQB training as a full-time profession, she works all year long in remote locations, keeping personal life aside.

Awards and recognition[edit]

President of India Ram Nath Kovind awarding India's highest civilian award for women; Nari Shakti Puraskar to Dr. Seema Rao on International Women's Day, 8th March 2019

Home Minister Chidambaram approved Rao and Major Deepak Rao as Resource to Home Ministry to train all state police in CQB without compensation, of which 16 states have already been covered. Rao missed the rank which the President of India conferred rank to Major Deepak Rao, due to lack of provision, but gracefully took it in her stride. She is the recipient of many awards — World Peace Award by World Peace Congress, Malaysia awarded by the Prime Minister of Malaysia for contribution to the country in 2008, US President's Volunteer Service Award, three Army Chief Citations, Home Minister of India Letter of Commendation in 2009 placing on record the selfless National service in the field of close quarters battle training, 1000 felicitations from Indian government. Yet she prefers to lie low and avoid social limelight despite being featured as a woman of substance[23] by magazines like Society, Savvy, India Today Femina, New Woman, national newspapers, TV and going viral on social media.[24][25][26][27][28][29]. On the occasion of International Women's Day, Hindustan Times[30] featured her for having achieved something for the first time in India’s history. Times of India[31] featured both Seema & Komal Rao, the mother-daughter wonder women duo via the Times News Network. Dr. Seema Rao was rated No. 6 in the 2019 Forbes India[32] W-Power Trailblazer list. Dr. Seema received India's highest civilian honour for women[33] Nari Shakti Puraskar from His Excellency the President of India in 2019.


Rao has co-authored the first Encyclopedia of Close Combat Ops training in the world, produced solely for Indian forces as well as the first Indian book on world terrorism — A Comprehensive Analysis of World Terrorism and the first book on Commando Manual of Unarmed Combat. Her books have found a place in the libraries of FBI, INTERPOL, UN, and SWAT Police the world over. She is a prolific author and has eight titles thus far. .

Book Title ISBN
Handbook of World Terrorism 978-93-313-1779-7
The Art of Success 978-93-313-1699-8
Mind Range 978-81-907765-1-6
Terrorism: A Comprehensive Analysis of World Terrorism 81-7648-527-6
Encyclopedia of Close Combat Ops. 978-81-907765-0-9
Commando Manual of Unarmed Combat 978-81-907765-9-2
What is this thing you do? In Cantonese, Jeet Kune Do! 978-81-907765-7-8
King Sperm 978-81-907765-2-3


  1. ^ "'Close to 50, yet I like to spar and engage in combat with men to keep fit'". Times of India. Retrieved 2019-03-08.
  2. ^ "India's wonder woman". Deccan Chronicle. Retrieved 2017-06-25.
  3. ^ "India's Wonder Woman". The Asian Age. Retrieved 2017-06-25.
  4. ^ "India's Wonder Woman Seema Rao: The only Female Combat Trainer in the Country". Being Indian. Retrieved 2017-06-26.
  5. ^ "Dr Seema Rao Trains the Special Forces of Indian Armed Force". thebharatmilitaryreview. Retrieved 2012-12-11.
  6. ^ "Interview with Dr. Seema Rao". Retrieved 2015-08-11.
  7. ^ "Shy Another Day". DNA. Retrieved 2017-06-25.
  8. ^ "Dr Seema Rao Commando Trainer". Retrieved 2017-06-25.
  9. ^ "Training the Indian Forces". BBC. Retrieved 2017-06-25.
  10. ^ "Indian Super Woman Dr. Seema Rao". Deccan Chronicle. Retrieved 2016-08-21.
  11. ^ "Combat Specialist Couple Of India". Retrieved 2018-03-24.
  12. ^ "India's only female commando trainer". storypick. Retrieved 2016-07-11.
  13. ^ "COMBAT SPECIALIST SEEMA RAO". Verve Magazine. Retrieved 2016-12-12.
  14. ^ "Jeet Kune Do Instructor - Dr Seema Rao". LokMarg. Retrieved 2017-06-25.
  15. ^ "Dr Seema Rao - India's only commando trainer". indiatimes. Retrieved 2016-07-11.
  16. ^ "India's First Female Commando Trainer, Seema Rao". Jaipur Women Blog. Retrieved 2016-08-21.
  17. ^ "India's 1st woman commando trainer's tips to prevent rape". uni, Retrieved 2014-01-12.
  18. ^ "India's 1st woman commando trainer on women empowerment". uni, Retrieved 2014-03-08.
  19. ^ "India's 1st woman commando trainer's film on empowerment to release soon". Retrieved 2014-03-08.
  20. ^ "Reflex Fire of ACCS". Retrieved 2009-09-30.
  21. ^ "International Institute of Security & safety Management". Archived from the original on 2009-08-19. Retrieved 2009-09-30.
  22. ^ "Unstoppables Combat Couple". Retrieved 2009-10-04.
  23. ^ "Woman Of Substance". Retrieved 2013-01-15.
  24. ^ "Seema Rao Role Model". Dainik Bhaskar. Retrieved 2016-08-15.
  25. ^ "ETV Gujarati Covers Dr Seema Rao". ETv Gujarati. Retrieved 2016-08-15.
  26. ^ "Dr Seema Rao Doordarshan interview for News program Tejaswani". DD News. Retrieved 2016-10-28.
  27. ^ "India's Only Female Commando Trainer, Who's Also A Firefighter & A Filmmaker". IndiaTimes. Retrieved 2017-06-26.
  28. ^ "Training Indian Special Forces for over 20 years". Scoop Whoop Good News on Facebook. Retrieved 2017-06-26.
  29. ^ "Meet Dr.Seema Rao". SBS Australia. Retrieved 2017-06-26.
  30. ^ "International Women's Day: Seema Rao, India's First Woman Commando Trainer". Retrieved 2018-03-08.
  31. ^ "The Maa-Beti Wonder Women: Seema and Komal Rao". Retrieved 2018-03-08.
  32. ^ "Dr Seema Rao is No 6 in the 2019 Forbes India Woman-Power". Retrieved 2019-03-01.
  33. ^ "President gives Nari Shakti Puraskar, woman marine pilot, commando trainer receive loudest cheers". Retrieved 2019-03-08.