A resolve in every breath

A wheelchair fitted with a device which has breath sensors helping a physically challenged person to do odd jobs gives them freedom from assistance and loads of confidence


Jasleen Kaur | March 13, 2013

A breath sensor apparatus to assist physically challenged people was the highlight at the national grassroots innovation exhibition, organised annually in Delhi at Rashtrapati Bhawan. Innovations by communities and individuals are put on display at the exhibitions every year.

Started in March 2000, the exhibition is organised by the National Innovation Foundation-India (NIF) to support grassroots technological innovations and outstanding traditional knowledge.

NIF has collected more than 1,74,000 ideas, innovations and traditional knowledge practices from over 550 districts of the country.

NIF first recognises an innovator and then helps the person collaborate with research and development institutions to convert the potential ideas into value added products.

“Average complexity of the innovation is increasing,” says Anil Gupta, executive vice-chairperson, NIF.

“Our children do not want to live with the problem anymore. They want the problem solved and they are ready to work for it. The best of the ideas are coming from them,” he said.

He added that this year 20 percent of the participants were women, the highest so far and there has also been an increase in participation from the north east.

Some of the innovations exhibited are:
jasleen2.jpgSusant Pattnaik, a first year engineering student, has developed a breath sensor apparatus for people with paralysis. A device is fitted the wheelchair which helps a person perform his routine tasks like moving forward, backward, ask for food or water, etc. A screen is fitted to the arms of the wheelchair where different tasks are mentioned. A light blinks on a regular basis on each task. One can select what one wants to be done by breathing with a slight force. The idea occurred to Susant when he was in class 11. He incorporated his accident-proof technology in this wheelchair to make it safer and prevent it from falling down the stairs.


jasleen1.jpgLalbiakzuala Ralte and Lalpiangliana Biakthuama Sailo(Right) have developed a bamboo stripper-cum-splinter, which cuts short the work and dangers involved in using knife for making bamboo strips and splints. Mizoram is rich in bamboo and the traditional way of making strips is by using a knife which also entails risk.

Through this machine, a person can make approximately 5,000 splints of the same thickness in an hour. More than 1,850 machines have been sold in the last five years.


jasleen3.jpgArvindbhai Patel has developed a natural water cooler. The idea struck him when he was down with fever. His wife repeatedly applied cold packs on his forehead to keep the temperature in check. This gave him an idea to use the same principle to develop a water cooler, which would not require electricity. In his natural water cooler, water is passed through copper coils which are covered with moistened cotton cloth.

Dharamveer Singh Kamboj made a multipurpose processing machine which enables farmers to process various farm products. The machine is unique because it processes a wide variety of products without breaking the seeds of the fruit or vegetable. This machine is used for processing Aloe vera, mango, amla, tulsi, flowers like rose and lavender.



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