Diving in India
PADI Instructor Development Course and Instructor Exam in Pondicherry, India – 100% success!
The first ever PADI Asia Pacific Instructor Exam was held on India’s mainland in Pondicherry, located on the south-eastern coastline in the Bay of Bengal.
The event took place from 28-29th October, 2013 and followed the very first PADI Instructor Development Course on mainland India, conducted by PADI Course Director, Mark Soworka.
The programwas hosted by PADI 5 Star Instructor Development Resort, Temple Adventures in Pondicherry.
Four of the six new PADI Instructors are Indian Nationals; Akhil Jude, Vivek Naidu, Siddarth Brave and Balarm Bethanabelli - together with Alexandre Bouleau and Stephane Fayon who are French ex patriots.
PADI Instructor Examiner, Rob Scammell advised that the group had ‘felt the heat’during the Open Water Evaluation dive, which took place at a local quarry in water temperatures of over 30˚c.
All passed the PADI Instructor Exam with flying colours and have now commenced their new careers as PADI Instructors working in India.
PHOTO: New PADI Instructors (listed in italics)
Back Row: Akhil Jude, Alexandre Bouleau, Denzil Linhares (PADI IDC Staff Instructor), Andy Stonebridge (PADI IDC Staff Instructor) Vivek Naidu, Siddharth Brave
Front Row: Sam Pinto (PADI IDC Staff Instructor), Rob Scammell (Instructor Examiner), Mark Soworka, (PADI Course Director),
Rob Partridge (PADI Master Instructor and owner of Temple Adventures), Balarm Bethanabelli, Aravind Tharunsri, (PADI Master Instructor), and Stephane Fayon.
Diving in India
First ever PADI Training Bulletin LIVE seminar held in India
PADI Asia Pacific hosted the very first PADI Training Bulletin LIVE seminar for PADI Members in India on the 27thOctober, 2013 which took place at the Accord Hotel in Pondicherry, on India’s eastern coast.
The event was conducted by PADI Instructor Examiner Rob Scammell with 20 PADI Members attending. Many had travelled great distances from locations such as Mumbai, Chennai, the Andaman Islands and also Delhi, which is a journey of 33 hours by bus.
The PADI Training Bulletin LIVE seminar – a face to face Training and Education Updatefor PADI Members - is based on the quarterly PADI Training Bulletin.
In Pondicherry, the focus was on the 4th Quarter Training Bulletin for 2013, in particular the upcoming PADI Open Water Course Revision.
Following the meeting, Rob Scammell reported, “As this was the first PADI Training Bulletin LIVE seminar to be held in India, it was great to see the support and enthusiasm from the local members and their commitment to PADI”.
Diving in India
PADI Instructor Exam, Havelock Island, India
PADI would like to congratulate all the new instructors who passed the latest PADI Instructor Examination held on Havelock Island, (Andamans) India during 7-8th May, 2013.
Not only did all the candidates pass, they all also signed up to become AWARE Shark Specialty Instructors! Some of the first in India!
Resident PADI Course Director Thein X. Do professionally guided and mentored all the candidates through the PADI Instructor Development Course at PADI 5 Star IDC Barefoot Scuba, ensuring their success at the PADI IE.
Well done to all involved….. PADI Regional Manager Tony Andrews would like to extend a special ‘Thank You’ to Thein, Denzil and PADI Examiner, Rob Scammell.
Diving in India
An Interview with Jashan Shah – India’s first Junior Master Scuba Diver
PADI would like to congratulate Jashan Shah who in March 2013, became the first and only Junior Master Scuba Diver in India. At 12 years old - Jashan who lives in Surat City in Western India - is also the youngest Junior Master Scuba Diver of his nation.
His first experience of the underwater world was during a semi-sub marine ride in Egypt in 2008. Jashan then developed a keen interest in diving and despite the fact that the nearest PADI Dive centre at Goa was at least 800 kms away from his home, was determined to learn to dive without delay and explore the oceans.
Following is an interview that reveals just some of this remarkable young man’s diving achievements to date.
When did you first start diving?
When I visited Egypt in 2008. The hotel where I stayed offered diving lessons so I took my first breaths under water there. At 10 years of age, my first open water dive was at Suzy’s wreck at Grande Island, Goa in India.
Where did you become a PADI Master Scuba Diver?
I became a PADI Master Scuba Diverat Goa Aquatics, a PADI Dive Resort and the instructor was Anindya Mukherjee. In fact, Anindya was the instructor for my PADI Open Water Diver certification too.
What PADI Specialty dive courses have you completed?
I have completed following speciality courses:
- Night Diver
- Enriched Air Diver
- Peak Performance Buoyancy
- Digital UW Photography
- Boat Diver
What is your favorite PADI Specialty dive course?
My favorite PADI Specialty is the Night Diver course.
Why was thisspecialty your favorite?
This PADI specialty is my favorite because it gave me an opportunity to see underwater activities at night. It was nice to see sleeping fish. It also gave me a chance to see planktons. They were like stars twinkling in the sky.
Tell us (briefly) about your PADI Instructor.
My first PADI Instructor is Anindya Mukherjee from Goa Aquatics. He is also the one who taught my first 3 PADISpecialties - Peak Performance Buoyancy and Underwater Photography - and Rescue Diver. For me, he is the best diver in the world. He taught me everything thatI need to know about diving. He is a disciplined teacher and very passionateabout diving. Almost every day after the course work, he used to play volleyball with me, which I liked very much.
My other instructor is Alexandra Bassarab from Blue View Divers, a PADI 5 Star Dive Resort on Phi Phi Island in Thailand. She is very cool and I enjoyed learning 2 more PADI Specialties; the Emergency First Response course and PADI Advanced Open Water course with her. She was very good in explaining things that were difficult to understand. I like her passion for the environment.
What was your most memorable or funniest moment during your diving courses?
There have been many memorable moments from diving. The most memorable is the one when I used a DPV (diver propulsion vehicle) with Alexandra in Phi Phi. We could move very fast, see many things and we took a couple of rounds of the whole island. The other memorable event was seeing a big Leopard Shark and an octopus for the first time. The dive in Goa, when my mother and father accompanied me is equally memorable as the whole family was diving together.
There is one sad moment also. During one of my rescue training dives, my father was also diving and shooting with his new camera. He accidently lost it - it sank to the sea bottom and disappeared in the hard corals. We never got it back.
Where is your favorite dive location?
From the dive sites I have visited, my favorite dive location is Bida Nok and Hin Bida in Phi Phi, Thailand. I would like to dive at locations where I can see Whale Sharks and Manta Rays.
Which diving coursesare you thinking of doing next, and when?
I’m thinking of doing PADI’s DPV Specialty course during my next dive trip, which may be at the end of this year.
Do you have any words of advice to give to new/ beginnerdivers?
I would suggest scuba diving to anyone who hasn’t tried it yet. PADI’s videos and training manuals are a good source of information to learn diving. A different world exists underwater that is worth an experience and everyone should try it. We all should take care to preserve the underwater aquatic environment.
When learning, one must pay attention. Listen carefully and thoroughly understand what the instructor says. One should always follow safety standards that are very well prescribed by PADI.
Diving in India
The Andaman Islands - Captains and Crew at Jet Airways become PADI Open Water Divers
During May 2012, Captain Prashant Bararia of Jet Airways (India) Ltd, became a PADI Rescue Diver and also introduced scuba diving to his friends and colleagues at Jet Airways who are pilots and cabin crew.
Completing the PADI Open Water course were: Captain Amit Katna, First Officers Avinish Gupta and Rohin Bassi and Cabin Crew Nikhil Paul, Dorothy Saikia (Lead & Check Crew) and Angon Saikia (Line).
Diver training was carried out with Andaman Dive Academy, a PADI Five Star Instructor Development Centre in the Andaman Islands.
The Andaman Sea should be in the top 5 of every diver’s to-do list, an amazing underwater world with 800 species of marine life and some of the best corals anywhere on the planet.
Says Prashant, “Everyone had a very cautious and guarded approach to diving when they first came,
but that first dive changed everything and now everyone is hooked on it.
Our PADI Dive Instructor, Mritunjai Sisuadia was brilliant and is a very patient, extremely professional and experienced trainer.
I also had the good fortune of doing all my courses under good instructors. Mr Madhav Reddy, owner of Andaman Dive Academy ensured that the logistics were well handled. He mentioned that they are planning on getting two new advanced boats in the coming season to take scuba diving to a higher level in this area and we wish him and everyone else all the very best.”
Originally from Rajasthan, India and now based in Hyderabad, Prashant Bararia has been with Jet Airways for 16 years. Jet Airways is the largest Indian airline - based out of Mumbai. Prashant joined the airline as a First Officer and became
a Captain within 2 ½ years. He is now a Pilot Examiner on the Boeing 737-300 through to 900 series of aircraft with
12,500 hours of personal flying experience and has logged more than 1,000 hours of Pilot training and checks.
His interests are Aeromodelling and Travel - having covered most of Europe and New Zealand on motorcycle. He is a certified sailor and enjoys windsurfing and parasailing.