Shubha: from EVMs & EVs to now locomotives – Latest News

A telegram brought home Shubha VB the news of her first job in 1997. A fresh engineering grad then, Shubha had been teaching at her alma mater, The National Institute of Engineering, Mysore. But that she knew was only a stop-gap. She spotted a newspaper ad announcing a national-level selection for Bharat Electronics Ltd in Bengaluru and gave it a shot. She got it.

From automating the artillery combat process for the defence forces, to being one of the core developers in the team that made the electronic voting machine (EVM), Shubha was part of many marquee projects at BEL. Today she is senior director of software engineering at locomotive maker Wabtec Corporation India.

Shubha grew up in Shivamogga and Chitradurga, one among three sisters. Her father retired as the principal of a nursing college. A teacher at home meant discipline, dedication, devotion. During her engineering days, Shubha’s class of 60 students had just eight girls. “Our lecturers would sometimes make it obvious by asking if we girls got the concepts right.” To break such gendered perceptions, Shubha and the other girls would make it a point to raise their hands first to answer questions. That early effort to find an equal footing took Shubha places – right from the Faridkot army camp in Punjab to the Military Headquarters of War near Indore, to test defence units she had designed. “I had the opportunity to witness field testing in several sensitive border areas,” says Shubha. She also worked on cockpit display upgrades for the LCA Tejas, and got to demonstrate BEL’s EVMs to the Election Commission, and even Singapore’s Elections Department.

Shubha moved to automotive product development when she joined Robert Bosch Engineering and Business Solutions. She was part of the diesel gasoline systems group and worked on engine management ECUs (electronic control units). “From a very mechanical-intensive space we started moving towards electronic controls for safer, secure and more reliable operations. That’s where I also started looking into how we could impact the environment,” she says.

Resilience reaps benefits. We never know our threshold till we try

Shubha VB | senior director – software engineering, Wabtec Corporation India

From Bosch, Shubha moved to L&T Technology Services, where she led software development for BMW EV (electric vehicle) and HEV (hybrid electric vehicle) projects.

With Wabtec, she got on to the locomotive track. Shubha leads multiple teams, working on technologies such as embedded software, web/user interface technology, IoT, cloud technology and data analytics.

Shubha knows six languages, including German, and is now learning Sanskrit. “Ethics, values, ideologies and principles from the ancient Vedas are relevant for effective leadership, management and ethical governance,” she says.

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