“I have started providing training to new women welders.”

Bhartiben Patel
Baroda Equipment and Vessels Pvt Ltd

What made you choose welding as a career, which is highly male dominated segment?

Well ! To work in manufacturing industry was my dream. I got an opportunity from Baroda Equipment & Vessels Ltd (BEV), Muval which was just 6 Km away from my home. Due to excitement to learn and work in the mechanical field, I have applied to join for the position of Tack welder. Everyone in my neighbourhood has insisted me to not to work in hard core mechanical where there is a lot of heavy work and stress. In fabrication shop good welder have a respect this is also one reason of attraction.

2. Could you brief us on journey so far into welding?

Ans: 2014 was the starting of my career as a tack welder, I learned about the machineries used in the company, assembly of the equipment. Slowly I gained the skill to weld in 1 F position and learn all the basic welding techniques. Later on I have qualified in the same 1 f position. Moreover within 3 months I have qualified in 3 G position

Looking back, today I am a qualified welder in GTAW, SMAW, FCAW, SAW & GMAW processes.

3. What is your current nature of work?

Ans: Currently I work as an experienced Welder. I work comfortably in all positions. Furthermore, I have started providing training to new women welders who join as a welder in our company.

4. Any welding position specialize into?

Ans: I am much confident in GTAW welding, as my weaving skills outcast a good appearance to the weld with least repair history.

5. Could you please share your experience of some of the mega project you worked upon?

Ans: Basically, I have worked in various projects of several equipment which includes pressure vessels, heat exchangers, structures, iso-tanks, piping. Each project has its own criticality, but some are quite challenging. Working in iso-frames which has critical positions of full penetrations was one among the challenging work done.

I do remember the welding works that I have done on tube to tube sheet welding which has a thickness of 2 mm in steam coil air pre heater (Client : BHEL/NTPC). This was well appreciated since there were no burn through found and no leakage found during the pressure test.

6. Your current project?

Ans: Currently I am assigned for welding works of Fabric filter for Nayara Energy. These are vessels with tube sheets and cone weld seams. Along with this project I am working in iso-frames and TSA vessels.

7. Please share some of the interesting anecdotes during your career?

Ans: Our Company is much inclined to promote women in the industry. As part of the improvement, our M.D sir has instructed to get the 1-month training for the 6G position and qualify. I have taken as a challenge with self and I have completed the training and got qualified for the same within a month.

This has been a turning and an upgrade to my career growth.

8. When you are on site, what are the key points you consider during welding for any projects? Any suggestions.

Ans: Key points that to check are: set-up of the machines, wearing all required safety precautions before welding such as mask, apron, welding helmet etc. Check for the feasibility of welding on the set-up joint, position of joint, kind of weld consumable requirements, current and voltage ratings mentioned in the WPS.

As part of suggestion, I recommend that every welder should do all the checks before the start of the welding, moreover should learn to check WPS parameter prior to welding.

9. What is your say on health and safety in welding? How do you consider the same when on job ?

Ans : When it comes to the matter of Health and Safety, BEV has a strong HSE department whose permission and regulations has to be followed in the company which has reduced accidents so far.

Proper use of helmet, gloves, aprons, safety shoes must be worn while doing any welding activity. Must also check safe working place and machine before start of the activity.

10. Have you anytime faced gender discrimination on site, as the stream is male dominated?

Ans : No, BEV has provided me safe and conducive environment without any gender discrimination. All our Supervisors, Mangers/ Engineers has supported not only me but also other women workers in the company for the growth. I believe that they have been my support for my growth both professionally and personally.

11.Your biggest achievement so far?

Ans: My biggest achievement is that I am qualified welder for all positions such as GTAW, SMAW, FCAW, SAW & GMAW. In short, I have become capable for any welding work in BEV. I have trained three other women from my village who is qualified and now working along with me.

12. Could you please take us to your qualification background?

Ans: I have completed my 10th grade and became a Homemaker after marriage. I have two kids, a boy and a girl. I do not have technical qualification but after joining at BEV I learn welding and other technical work.

13. How much of total experience do you hold?

Ans : I have a total of 8 years of experience in the same company.

14. What are your future plans?

Ans: I wanted to learn new techniques in welding. Train more and more woman in this field. I wanted to educate my children.

15. Closing message, especially to the female.

Ans: Women have to learn the skills, to get work in industry. It is not limited to welding, but women can work in all the field of industry and get success. Seeing a woman perusing what she truly wants can be a motivation to another woman with the similar background no matter what place or situation she comes from. This will help to reduce economical dependency and will be helpful for family to children.