Fronius India, in association with National Skills Network, organized a webinar on the topic “Skills and Certificate: The Way Forward” on the occasion of World Youth Skills Day 2020, with the eminent industry leaders. The panelist included Mr. Ashok Shahane, Deputy Chief Executive, Skill India Mission, Larsen and Toubro Ltd.; Mr. A.N. Chandramouli, Board Member, Starrag India Pvt. Ltd.; Mr. Prasenjit Kundu, Chief Executive Officer, SkillSonics India Pvt. Ltd.; and Fr. Joby Aseethuparambil, Director and Principal, Little Flower Engineering Institute.
This webinar was moderated by Mr. V V Kamath, Managing Director, Fronius India. The unique thing about the webinar was that Fronius India had roped in the Indian welding skill crusaders to speak about their experience, who are leading a path towards a skilled India and are role models for many. The skill crusaders were Aapti Vyas, Vinu Preetha, Sachin Narale, and Aswatha Narayana.
Fronius India received an overwhelming response to the webinar. It was attended by 700+ attendees. It was well appreciated by the attendees as they could hear from the stalwarts and the young crusaders at the same time. Fronius India’s objective behind creating such a platform was to showcase the skilled manpower requirement in the welding segment.
The inspirational journey of skill crusaders
Aapti Vyas is from C. V. Raman global university, Bhubaneswar. Welding is her passion and she has won the 1st prize in National Welding League (NWL) 2019 and stood 3rd in the National Welding League 2020. She has also participated in the National Best Welder Competition Season 2 organized by IIW and stood 3rd in ‘AQUEST 2019’ Bhubaneswar sub-chapter organized by HITACHI.
“In our village, there is a man who runs a welding workshop near my father’s shop. When I was in my school, most often I used to be there and whenever he saw me, he used to say “Aapti, you have to study well, otherwise one day you will also have to be a welder like me”. At that time I had taken it as a joke as I didn’t know that this will be my career.
After hearing about this competition, I thought maybe I am destined for this. With lots of curiosity for learning new things, I decided to participate and started my practice. On the very first day of my practice, it was too tough to handle the torch and the workshop seemed noisy to me but slowly and steadily the noise converted into a rhythm of sparks and I started liking how the molten metal is building up and it was fun to play with fire and learning different techniques of welding. I practiced under the guidance of my mentor Apurba Sanyal sir who was always there to rectify my mistakes and supported me.
When the first day of competition has arrived, I saw 100 women participants and was a bit nervous as that was the first time ever I have participated in any National level competition. But the one thing that motivated me a lot is my parents who have struggled to make me reach here and the efforts of my professors. I performed in NWL 2019 at my best and when the results were declared I was the winner. The most important thing for me about this competition was the safety shoes I wore in this competition and I brought them by the money my parents have taken in debt. So, it gave me a kind of satisfaction that I made it worth it. I was so curious to explore my career in this field.
After that, I participated in the next competition i.e; National Women’s Best Welder Competition Season 2 by IIW. However, I did not qualify for the final round in this competition. Even though I felt bad I decided not to stop here. And if I would have stopped, it might have been my biggest failure. Someone has said that failure brings a gift with it called experience, so I learned a lot from it and kept on exploring. I again participated in the Next competition i.e; NWL 2020. As I have to balance my academics with welding practice I was a bit late in starting my practice for it. It was just seven days prior to competition, I started my practice. This time the format was on the WorldSkills basis and totally different from the previous one. I was under the guidance of ‘Dr. Shushovan Basak’ sir. I followed all his instructions and performed in NWL 2020 and this time I got bronze in NWL 2020″, shared Aapti Vyas.
Vinu Preetha is from Bannari Amman Institute of Technology, where she is pursuing B.E Mechatronics. She won a medallion of excellence at C. V. Raman College of Engineering in MIG and TIG welding.
“I am thankful for my college management for their full support. I also thank my guide, Sundarraju sir, and my friends who participated along with me in this league. In our college every semester, we have one-month skill training and special lab training which helped us in developing the skill.
My father is my inspiration. He is a mechanic and in my childhood, I used to play with mechanical equipment. This made me choose Mechatronics Engineering.
I started my practice before one month of the competitions. Only during industrial training, I discovered my skill and my interest in welding. My patience and love towards welding made me win the competition National Welding League”, said Vinu Preetha.
Sachin Narale hails from Sangli and completed his ITI. He has won many National and State level competitions like WorldSkills along with many regional and national level welding skill competitions. He has also represented India in Sao Paulo, Brazil WorldSkills competition (WSC) in the welding segment and made India proud.
“From state level to national and to international level skill requirement became tougher and tougher and I had to sharpen my saw continuously to compete with the people at international standards. I began with getting trained at DON Bosco Mumbai, for welding techniques. For WorldSkills training, I have gone to Lincoln Electrical at Chennai. Every day, I used to spend 12 hours of my time doing welding for four months after doing yoga and walk for 5 km. But as we say practice makes a man perfect, I continued my hard work.
After this, I never looked back and achieved many milestones and won National level competitions and state-level competitions like WorldSkills State, National and International level, and many regional and national Level welding skill competitions.
My dream came true when I represented India in Sao Paulo, Brazil WorldSkills competition (welding segment). I was very happy as on that day all my dreams come true. I was proud to carry the Indian flag on my shoulder. It was a wonderful experience for me.
After winning the competition in Brazil, I felt it was my responsibility to make the Indian flag fly every year in the competition. For the same, I started developing and training people in skill competitions at all levels. It is indeed a great feeling that the people trained by me are participating in the WorldSkills competition.
I have trained candidates from Mahindra and Mahindra (M&M) to compete at WSC 2017 and WSC 2019 and at other international forums. Omkar Sawant got selected for WSC 2017 to represent India, Koteshwar Reddy from Zahirabad plant got selected for WSC 2019 and won Medallion of excellence”, shared Mr. Sachin Narale.
Aswatha Narayana is a B.Tech Graduate in Applied Electronics and Instrumentation Engineering from C. V. Raman College of Engineering, Bhubaneswar. He became the 1st ever to win Gold Medal from India in the prestigious WorldSkills Competition which was held from 23rd to 27th Aug 2019 in Kazan, Russia.
“I’m currently training the prospective candidates for the upcoming WorldSkills competition. I’m also going to pursue a master’s degree in Water Resource Engineering and Management from the University of Stuttgart in Germany later this year.
I have competed in the skill Water Technology at IndiaSkills 2018 competition where I won the Gold medal for Odisha and qualified to represent the country at the WorldSkills 2019 Competition. I have represented India at the WorldSkills competition where I have competed with competitors from 10 other countries and won the 1st Gold medal for the Nation at the WorldSkills Competition. I was also awarded the Best of Nation award for my performance in the competition. Water Technology is a skill related to Water Treatment and Wastewater Management. In the skills Water Technology, the competitors were tested on their skillsets in various Engineering aspects related to Water and Wastewater Treatment Industry.
I was also trained in the International Boot Camp training for Water Technology in Stuttgart, Germany, organized by the German association for water, wastewater, and waste (DWA) in association with FESTO, ADIRO, and WorldSkills Germany. I also won the IFAT University Challenge India, 2019 for Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM) organized by DWA and ISWA.
Being an Instrumentation Engineer, my Interest in the field of Industrial Automation and the urge to do something to preserve the critical resource has driven me to take up Water Technology as a skill. Since water is the world’s most critical resource, the importance of this occupation and the quality of those fulfilling it, is second to none”, said Mr. Aswatha Narayana.
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