The flight may be yours, but she rules the sky – Richa Goswami
From working in the defense services to being in the driver’s seat of fighter jets, we have seen women enter every damn field which once was handled only by men. Today women have entered yet another challenging field of handling air traffic and perhaps for the first time in Belagavi, a woman has the radio in her hands.
Meet Richa Goswami working as ATC (Air Traffic Controller) Manager at Sambra Airport, Belagavi. She has done her Btech in Electronics and Communication and was earlier posted at the country’s second busiest IGI Airport Delhi where the air traffic movement is 1500 to 1600 per day or 300 to 500 every hour. Richa says that the job needs 100% concentration and 0% error as it involves the lives of people on board the flight. It is a very challenging job but exciting at the same time.
The working shifts keep on changing and you need to adjust your body accordingly. Decisions have to be taken in a fraction of a second owing to a lot of mental stress. Testing times are during VIP visits, bad weather, high fog and high pollution where many flights get diverted or delayed.
As per the Airports Authority of India (AAI) there are 3692 Air Traffic Controllers in India as on 31 January 2023 out of which less than 10% are females. The ATC is a government job and is governed by the Airports Authority of India. The AAI is a public sector enterprise under the ownership of the Ministry of Civil Aviation, Government of India. The Air Traffic Controller manages the flow of aircraft into and out of the airport airspace, guides pilots during takeoff and landing, and monitors aircraft as they travel through the skies.
Richa is happy not just to work as an ATC but also to be an inspiration to many other women to take up challenging jobs. If your flight was ever diverted at the last moment due to bad weather or fog, thanks to Richa and all the other Air Traffic Controllers who have saved many lives by taking the right decision in quick time. So, if you are traveling in any airways, remember, the flight may be yours, but Richa rules the skies.