How a Brilliant Gujarati Created ‘Sabki Pasand Nirma’ in His Backyard…!!!

Washing powder Nirma
Nirma!

You may or may not use Nirma’s detergent powder to wash your clothes today, but it is highly unlikely that you would be unfamiliar with this jingle, or the advertisement featuring a young girl in a spotless white frock, twirling around playfully.

The catchy jingle and the young girl were exactly what Karsanbhai Patel, the founder of the Nirma brand, used to capture India’s attention to and overtake the big names in the market in the early 1980s.

This is Patel’s story of how he took a new detergent brand from his backyard to every middle-class house in India.

The year was 1969, and a brand named ‘Surf’ by Hindustan Lever Ltd (now Hindustan Unilever) had complete monopoly over the detergent market in India.

Priced between Rs 10 and Rs 15, it removed the stains from your clothes without harming your hands and was better for your clothes than a regular bar of washing soap.

However, the price was a major pain point for middle-class households, who found it to be beyond their budget. So, they continued to use soap bars.

Karsanbhai Patel, a chemist at the Gujarat Government’s Department of Mining and Geology, wanted to enter this very market and provide middle-class families like his, some relief.

He decided to make a detergent from scratch in his backyard in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, keeping in mind that that the price of the product, as well as the production costs, needed to be low.

He developed the formula, manufactured a yellow-coloured detergent powder, and started selling it for Rs 3. The brand was named Nirma, after Nirupama, Patel’s daughter, who had passed away in an accident.

He would go from door to door in each neighbourhood and give a ‘money back’ guarantee with every packet he sold.

A quality product, Nirma was also the lowest-priced branded washing powder at the time and became a huge hit in Ahmedabad.

Soon, Patel quit his job and decided to pursue this venture full time and take on the big players in the market. In those days, credit terms were the norm for retailers to follow. If Patel followed those, he would have been left with a huge cash crunch. Something he could not risk.

So, he devised a brilliant plan. One that would make Nirma a household name across India.

The washing powder was doing fairly well in Ahmedabad so Patel invested a little money in a television advertisement.

The catchy jingle—which stated that Nirma was “sab ki pasand”(everyone’s choice)—and the girl in a frilly white dress, became an instant hit.

Customers flocked to local markets to buy the product. However, the cunning Patel had withdrawn 90% of the stock, to lather up the demand.

For about a month, customers kept watching the advertisement, but when they would head out to purchase the washing powder, they would return home empty-handed.

The retailers pleaded with Patel to resume the supply, and after a month, he obliged and flooded the markets with the product.

The demand was sky high—so much so, in fact, that Nirma overtook Surf’s purchases by a large margin and became the most sold detergent that year. In fact, it managed to keep up its production and sales for a decade after this brilliant move.

While the product was affected by the obvious ups and downs of the market, Patel was not too concerned because he had decided to beyond manufacturing just a detergent. Soon, he launched toilet soaps, beauty soaps, shampoos and toothpaste.

Some products were successful, some not so much. But the brand Nirma never lost its firm hold on the market. Today, it has a 20% market share in soap cakes and about 35% in detergents.

In 1995, Patel established the Nirma Institute of Technology in Ahmedabad, and in 2003, he founded the Institute of Management and the Nirma University of Science and Technology in 2003.

He maintains that the passion for keeping up the business and expanding its branches across markets is rooted in love for his late daughter.

Patel has been presented with several prestigious awards, including the Padma Shri in 2010 and was also featured in the Forbes list of India’s wealthiest (2009 and 2017).

Undeterred by the lack of a management degree, unafraid to go up against big names, and equipped only with a sharp business sense and a brilliant mind, Karsanbhai is a legend in the entrepreneurial fraternity, today.

He has proved that it is not just his brand, but his brilliance which is “sab ki pasand” in India.

(Edited by Gayatri Mishra)

Source……..Tanvi Patel in http://www.the betterindia.com

Natarajan

 

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Fort Kochi To Have 100 ‘Lantana’ Elephants. And Here’s Why You Need To See Them…

On February 7, if you are wandering around the popular South Beach in Fort Kochi, you are sure to come across a magnificent herd of 100 Asian elephants.

If you are wondering about the possibility of such a huge congregation of these beings at one place, let us break the news.

These are beautifully sculpted life-size elephants that have been made by tribal artisans from Thorapalli in Gudalur using Lantana camara or Lantana, a toxic invasive weed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Highlighting the cause of nature and wildlife conservation at a global scale, the Lantana elephants are part of a greater initiative to raise funds for conservation and help people and elephants live together more harmoniously.

The collaborators of the project involve various non-profit organisations from across the world including the UK based Elephant FamilyThe Real Elephant Collective(TREC), the Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and Environment (ATREE), and The Shola Trust.

“Our vision is to bring Asia’s elephants and the issues they face out of India and the shadow cast by the African ivory crisis. With Asian elephants numbering only a tenth of their African counterparts, the importance of this unique migration cannot be underplayed. The survival of a species is at stake,” says Ruth Ganesh, principal trustee and the creative force of Elephant Family.

She had conceptualised the Lantana herd along with Shubhra Nayar of TREC.

Modelled on real elephants from the Gudalur-Pandalur region, in its bid to raise awareness and funds for the conservation of Asian elephants, this unique project is also clearing the harmful Lantana from the Nilgiri forests while providing livelihoods to about 70 artisans from the Paniya, Bettakurumba and Soliga communities.

With their inherent knowledge of wild elephants and their exceptional crafting skills with Lantana, these artisans are bringing life to the elephant forms, while earning a dignified income.

Lantana was introduced to the Indian subcontinent as an ornamental shrub by the British.

However, it has taken over forests at a disturbingly fast pace, and is threatening the survival of the pachyderms by reducing their fodder base in the region.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The tribal artisans. Courtesy: The Shola Trust.

“Lantana encroachment has a negative impact on the regeneration of native flora, fodder and also non-timber forest products. It pushes animals out of forests, causing crop damage for local people, with a huge negative impact on livelihood of the indigenous communities. This project provides them with a livelihood opportunity and also gradually clears the forests from Lantana,” says Dr. Siddappa Setty, a fellow at ATREE.

This magnificent herd will stay in Kochi for about a month and then travel across the world to be part of exhibitions at different locations for auctioning.

The proceeds will be routed to a newly created Asian Elephant Fund that will be governed by a panel of elephant specialists in Asia.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“This project is innovative in many ways—it uses traditional indigenous artisanry to create these beautiful forms which can raise both awareness and funds for conservation while contributing significantly to indigenous livelihoods and clearing an invasive species to restore ecosystems,” adds Dr Nitin Pandit, Director of ATREE.

To know more about the Lantana elephants and their global tour, click here.

(Edited by Gayatri Mishra)

Source…….LeksmiPriya.S in http://www.the betterindia.com

Natarajan

 

Meet The Incredible, Inspiring Odisha Chaiwala Who Just Won Padma Shri….

For every cup of tea sold at his stall, he used half the amount towards the education and health of the slum kids.

“For 54 years, I was a roadside tea-seller. But today, I am a Padma Shri tea-seller,” beams Odisha-based 61-year-old D Prakash Rao, who was conferred the prestigious award on Republic Day by the Government of India.

How did a tea-seller win the fourth highest civilian award in the Republic of India, you ask.

His beautiful story will move you.                     D Prakash Rao

Rao was only six-years-old when he started working at his father’s tea-stall. His father served during the second world war. When the war ended, he returned to his hometown, Cuttack. He hoped that his service during the war would help him find an alternate job. But to his disappointment, nobody wanted to employ him.

Pushed by unemployment and poverty, with a meagre capital of Rs 5, he started the tea-stall. One that Rao continued to run for the next five decades.

He tells The Better India, “Living and working in a slum, I witnessed the resistance of parents towards education first-hand. Living in their makeshift jhuggi jhopdis, they thought of their children as means of earning income. Instead of enrolling them in schools, these children were enrolled in menial labour. Working odd jobs and becoming domestic helpers, whatever money they earned was often snatched by the men in the home, who would buy alcohol and turn to domestic violence. It deeply affected me, every single day.”

He continues, “I was a good student. Bright in academics, adept at football. I wanted to become a doctor but landed up becoming a chaiwala. I knew what it was like to not have any opportunities. And I did not want these kids to have the same fate.”

For every cup of tea sold at his stall, he used half the amount towards the education and health of the slum kids.

He first operated from his two-room thatched house, with four children, where he provided them with food and education, completely free of cost.

He faced opposition from the parents who complained, “Yeh bacche kya kar lenge padh ke? Meri ladki ghar kaam karke Rs 700 leke aati hai mahine ka. Aap padhake kyun humaare pet par lat maarna chahte ho? (What will our kids do if they study? My daughter works as a maid and earns Rs 700 monthly. Why are you kicking our stomachs by educating her?)”

But he did not give up.

Slowly, the number of kids rose, and today his school, ‘Asha o Ashwasana’, has transformed the lives of more than a hundred kids.

The same parents who complained about education, gratefully look on as they watch their sons and daughters cycle to their colleges today.

“Every day I cook dalma for them (a preparation of dal, rice and sabji). It gives me immense joy to see them relish the home-cooked meal that is high in nutrition. When the Prime Minister visited Cuttack five months ago, we had a brief meeting where he told me this meal was one of the best, being served in schools.”

The humble tea seller found a mention in the PM’s radio show, Mann Ki Baat where he said that Rao embodied the spirit of ‘Tamaso mā jyotir gamaya’ which means, ‘From darkness, lead me to light.’

The Prime Minister referred to him as a diya (lamp) which guides underprivileged kids to the path of enlightenment.

When asked about his reaction on being bestowed the award, he sayExclusive: Meet The Incredible, Inspiring Odisha Chaiwala Who Just Won Padma Shri

 

He tells The Better India, “Living and working in a slum, I witnessed the resistance of parents towards education first-hand. Living in their makeshift jhuggi jhopdis, they thought of their children as means of earning income. Instead of enrolling them in schools, these children were enrolled in menial labour. Working odd jobs and becoming domestic helpers, whatever money they earned was often snatched by the men in the home, who would buy alcohol and turn to domestic violence. It deeply affected me, every single day.”

He continues, “I was a good student. Bright in academics, adept at football. I wanted to become a doctor but landed up becoming a chaiwala. I knew what it was like to not have any opportunities. And I did not want these kids to have the same fate.”

For every cup of tea sold at his stall, he used half the amount towards the education and health of the slum kids.

He first operated from his two-room thatched house, with four children, where he provided them with food and education, completely free of cost.

He faced opposition from the parents who complained, “Yeh bacche kya kar lenge padh ke? Meri ladki ghar kaam karke Rs 700 leke aati hai mahine ka. Aap padhake kyun humaare pet par lat maarna chahte ho? (What will our kids do if they study? My daughter works as a maid and earns Rs 700 monthly. Why are you kicking our stomachs by educating her?)”

But he did not give up.

Slowly, the number of kids rose, and today his school, ‘Asha o Ashwasana’, has transformed the lives of more than a hundred kids.

The same parents who complained about education, gratefully look on as they watch their sons and daughters cycle to their colleges today.

“Every day I cook dalma for them (a preparation of dal, rice and sabji). It gives me immense joy to see them relish the home-cooked meal that is high in nutrition. When the Prime Minister visited Cuttack five months ago, we had a brief meeting where he told me this meal was one of the best, being served in schools.”


 


The humble tea seller found a mention in the PM’s radio show, Mann Ki Baat where he said that Rao embodied the spirit of ‘Tamaso mā jyotir gamaya’ which means, ‘From darkness, lead me to light.’

The Prime Minister referred to him as a diya (lamp) which guides underprivileged kids to the path of enlightenment.

When asked about his reaction on being bestowed the award, he says,

“The adulation and support that people have extended is overwhelming. I am honoured and humbled all at once by their warmth and the place they gave me in their hearts. When people say that I have transformed the lives of these kids, I say that it is these 100 children who have helped me reach this point and improved the quality of my life. Today, my small school has become a temple of education, where I serve these living gods (children). Even at 61, I am as fit as a fiddle and consider myself the richest man in the world, because serving them gives me the joy that no bundles of cash or jewels in the world can buy.”

Apart from the people of Cuttack and Odisha, who have supported his initiative, Rao also attributes his success to the media, which he says has been highly instrumental in taking his story to the masses.

He signs off with a message to the youth and aspiring social workers:

“In today’s fast-paced world, where many youths are driven by the passion for becoming rich overnight, remember that money is not everything. There is no shortcut to success. You will encounter several obstacles, but only when you serve selflessly will you attain success. Live your own lives but don’t shy away from extending a helping hand to those less privileged than you. It is only when we join hands to uplift the downtrodden, will India really become the sone ki chidiya (golden bird) that we sing odes to.”

(Edited by Shruti Singhal)

Source………  in http://www.the betterindia.com 

Natarajan

 

How an Idea, …and an Ad … and Some Italians Got us the Auto Rickshaw!!!

After that glorious stroke at midnight in August 1947, following two centuries under the colonial yoke, India finally became free.

While citizens reeled under the after-effects of a hurried partition, leaders had a mammoth task at hand. They needed to plan and act towards the development of the new nation—economically and socially—and her people as producers and consumers.

“Correcting the disequilibrium” in the economy and an improvement in “the living standards” of the people featured in the objectives for the First Five Year Plan(1951-52 to 1955-56).

In a February 1947 session of then Bombay’s legislative assembly, a member raised the inhuman conditions of rickshaw pullers. This discussion set many wheels in motion.

Morarji Desai, then Home Minister of Bombay province, suggested that cycle rickshaws be discontinued.

Cycle Rickshaws. Source: Wikimedia Commons

Navalmal Kundalmal Firodia, a freedom fighter, saw in this an opportunity to provide low-cost public transport to the country. The image of a three-wheeler “goods carrier” from a trade paper caught his eye and inspiration.

He submitted a plan to Desai and was told that if the vehicle was satisfactory from “a technical viewpoint”, it could be permitted under the public conveyance plan.

Firodia’s Jaya Hind Industries, set up a joint venture with Bachhraj Trading Corporation (later Bajaj Auto Private Limited), to replicate the vehicle in the image. It was manufactured by Italy’s Piaggio.

To better understand the nuances, Firodia bought a scooter and two three-wheeler goods carriers from the Italian company, studying the models and making several modifications to arrive at the final product.

Painted in hues of green and yellow, it was a mix of the hand-drawn carriages of the time and the automated two-wheeler. This contraption would soon become commonplace on Indian roads and affix its reliability on the Indian psyche.

The industrialist in Firodia had perhaps foreseen how it would enable independent Indians to undertake convenient and affordable trips around the country’s myriad cities and towns.

With the approval in the Bombay province, he saw and used another opportunity to popularise his vehicle—the prohibition of cycle rickshaws in Pune.

By December 1950, N Keshava Iyengar, the Mayor of Bangalore, approved the licenses of ten auto rickshaws in the capital of the princely state of Mysore. These vehicles “resembled a scooter pulling a passenger cabin attached to its rear”.

 

Iyengar inaugurated the first auto and is even said to have volunteered to take the vehicle’s owners, a Bangalorean man and his Italian wife, on its maiden journey!

While people hailed the autos, the jatka union (hand-drawn cart) in Bangalore and the tongawallahs in Pune were unimpressed; the last-mile connectivity to and from public transport that auto rickshaws provided stood in their way.

As did the restrictions from the Monopolies and Restrictive Trade Practices Act, 1969.

A coffee-table about Kamalnayan Bajaj, the pioneer of Bajaj Auto, highlights this in the following words.

“In the beginning, we were licensed to make 1,000 scooters and auto rickshaws per month. In 1962, we applied to increase manufacturing capacity to 30,000 and 6,000 auto rickshaws per year. In 1963, we applied to increase capacity from 24,000 scooters to 48,000. In 1970, we asked for 100,000. Eventually, in 1971, the government approved an increase to 48,000.”

While the Bajajs and Firodias went their separate ways, with the auto rickshaw coming under the Bajaj Group, Bangalore’s ten auto rickshaws grew to 40.

The fact that middle-class Indians did not yet have enough disposable income to own vehicles furthered the popularity of the auto rickshaw, and it became the symbol of affordable urban transport.

This was true not only for India, but also for other developing countries. By 1973, Bajaj Auto was exporting three-wheelers to Nigeria, Bangladesh, Australia, Sudan, Bahrain, Hong Kong and Yemen.

In the financial year 1977, the company introduced rear engine auto rickshaws and sold 100,000 vehicles.

Until 1980, the vehicles were only allowed to carry two passengers at a time. However, this changed in the next two decades, and today, autos can transport as many as can fit themselves on the seats!

As per data from EMBARQ, auto rickshaws in tier-2 cities (population between 1 and 4 million) number between 15,000 and 30,000, to more than 50,000 in tier-1 cities (population more than 4 million).

The sector also employs an estimated 5 million people!

Additionally, the auto rickshaw union is one of the most organised labour groups in the country. They follow the latest trends—from unitedly aping a favourite actor’s haircut to expressing their thoughts on the vehicle.

While auto drivers have been criticised for irregularities in the fare system, and their disregard to the safety of passengers, autos remain the quintessential mode of intermediate or even end-to-end transport for an Indian.

Taxi aggregators born in India and abroad have take note of this, and as a result, co-opted the vehicle in their business models.

Interestingly, Firodia was not just responsible for bringing the three-wheeler goods chassis from Italy and converting it into a passenger vehicle in India, but also coined the term ‘auto-rickshaw’.

The word now finds a place in the Oxford Dictionary, and since its introduction in 1949, the auto has not gone off the road.

Featured image: Pxhere

(Edited by Gayatri Mishra)

Source…..Shruti Singhal in http://www.the betterindia.com

Natarajan

 

 

Meet the Daredevil biker on Republic Day….2019

Captain Shikha Surabhi is the first woman to lead a formation of 36 men and 9 Royal Enfields of the Indian Army’s motorcycle display team on Republic Day.
She tells Rediff.com‘s Archana Masih how she made space for herself in a team that has never had a woman before. 

                                                                                                        IMAGE: Captain Shikha Surabhi is an officer in the Corps of Signals. She has also participated in three National Games. All Photographs kind courtesy Captain Shikha Surabhi                                                                                                                                 

It is after a long time that Captain Shikha Surabhi is getting two consecutive free days, and she is on her way to the railway station in New Delhi to pick up her father, an LIC agent in Bihar.

Her family is arriving to see her on Rajpath on the nation’s grand day when she will lead a formation of 36 men and 9 Royal Enfields of the Indian Army’s motorcycle display team on Republic Day.

She will stand on top of the bike for a distance of 2.4 kilometers to salute the President of India, the supreme comander of India’s armed forces. The bike will only be maouevered by her legs and will move at 22 to 23 km per hour.

The team called ‘Daredevils’ consists of 136 jawans, two male officers and 34 motorcycles.

She is the first lady officer to be part of the team.

Born in Arrah, Bihar and raised in Hazaribagh, Jharkhand, Captain Shikha learnt to ride a bike around her home as a girl and picked up serious biking after her first posting in Arunachal Pradesh.

She did a bike trip from Shimla to Ladakh over 8 days last year. “It brought strength to my arms and taught me how to handle rain, mud and difficult situations,” says the officer from the Corps of Signals who was encouraged by her commanding officer to be part of the Daredevils team.

Posted in Bathinda, Punjab, she volunteered to be part of the Daredevils team three months ago.

Selected after a month’s training in Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh, the team has been undergoing rigorous practice for three months.

IMAGE: Leading a human pyramid formation that will be at the parade on Republic Day. Two male officers are leading other formations.

 

 

 

 

 

 

“My team members were initially worried about how they would teach me. They weren’t sure if I would be strong enough, but they now tell me I have learnt fast, perhaps faster than them,” says the officer who will soon complete four years of service in the army.

“It is tough to prove yourself. You have to put your mind and body to it, but they have accepted me as a Daredevil officer.”

“I have had some injuries, but thankfully nothing major,” she says over the phone from New Delhi.

The team arrived in Delhi on December 18 and has been practicing every day, rising at 3.30 am.

Not really nervous about the big day, her only concern is the chance of rain. Heavy rain can make the bike unsteady.

“Rain or no rain, we have to perform 100%.”

Captain Shikha’s main motivation to pursue sport and a career in the army was her mother, who is a sports teacher at a school in Ranchi.

“I am from a Hindi medium school and because of sports, I participated in three National Games,” she says.

Hand wrestling and kick boxing were her events. She was even part of the army’s mountaineering team that trekked to the Gangotri glacier in Uttarakhand.

“I wanted a job with some physical activity,” says Captain Shikha who earlier wanted to be an IPS officer but seriously considered the army as a profession while studying computer science in college.

“The armed forces are a very good profession for girls. You have respect within the army as well as outside.”

“It also gives you many opportunities like a life of adventure. I wanted to do something for the nation and nothing is better than the army.”

Her younger sister, who is in Class 12, wants to follow her in the armed forces while her brother is in Mumbai trying to pursue an acting career.

Such was the officer’s commitment to the Daredevils display on Republic Day that she and her fiancé, also a captain in the army, postponed their wedding from December to May.

Fiancé Captain Ankit Kumar will be there to watch the parade with his parents and has been her biggest pillar of support as far as biking is concerned.

He is immensely proud that she has worked hard and made space for herself in a team that up till now only comprised men.

As Captain Shikha Surabhi’s big day dawns, she is overwhelmed with the opportunity and the privilege given to her.

“I am too happy, nothing could beat this feeling but in life you should crave for the next thing — and there are more things to do ahead — for the country and myself.”

Source….. Archana Masih in http://www.rediff.com

NatarajanK

 

 

தேநீர் கடையில் மனித நேயம் ….

செங்கல்பட்டு  அரசு தலைமை  மருத்துவமனைக்கு  எதிராக இருக்கும் ஸ்ரீ கிருஷ்ணன் தேநீர் கடையில் எப்போதும் “ஜே ஜே’  என்று  கூட்டம். இந்தக் கடையின் தேநீர், பலகாரங்கள் சுவையாக இருப்பது மட்டுமல்ல இந்தக் கூட்டத்திற்குக்  காரணம். பினீஷும், அவரது அண்ணன் ஷிபுவும் சேர்ந்து இலவசமாக  வழங்கி வரும் சுத்திகரிக்கப்பட்ட  தண்ணீர்தான்   கடையில் நிற்கும் கூட்டத்திற்கும், பலரது பாராட்டுகளுக்கும் காரணமாக அமைந்திருக்கிறது. வருஷத்தில் 365  நாட்களும் இந்த சுத்திகரித்த   தண்ணீர் இலவசமாக இங்கு கிடைக்கும்.

தண்ணீர் எடுத்துக் கொள்ள வருபவர்கள்  “தண்ணீர் வேண்டும்’  என்று யாரிடமும் கேட்கத் தேவையில்லை.  கேனில் இருக்கும்  தண்ணீரை எடுத்துக் கொள்ள வேண்டியதுதான். கேனில் தண்ணீர் தீர்ந்து விட்டால், தண்ணீர் இருக்கும் கேனைத்  திறந்து தண்ணீர் எடுத்துக் கொள்ளலாம்.  தண்ணீர் பிடிக்க வருபவர்களுக்கு அத்தனை சுதந்திரம் வழங்கப்படுகிறது.  இதற்காக,  தண்ணீர் எடுப்பவர்கள் வடை, பஜ்ஜி அல்லது டீயை வாங்க வேண்டும் என்றோ நிர்பந்தமும் இல்லை. அதிசயம், ஆச்சரியமாக இருக்கும் இந்த தண்ணீர் பந்தலின் பின்னணியின் ரகசியம்தான் என்ன என்று  தெரிந்து கொள்ள பினீஷை  சமீபித்தோம்:

“”உண்மைதான்…. இங்கே யார் வேண்டுமானாலும் வந்து  சுத்திகரிக்கப்பட்ட தண்ணீரை எவ்வளவு வேண்டுமானாலும்  இலவசமாக  எடுத்துக் கொள்ளலாம். கட்டுப்பாடுகள் இல்லை. ஒரு நாளைக்கு  இருபது லிட்டர்  தண்ணீர்  கேன்   நூறு முதல் நூற்றிப்பத்து வரை செலவாகிறது. இந்தத்  தண்ணீர் கேன்களை இரண்டு ஏஜென்சிகளிடமிருந்து வாங்குகிறோம். ஒரு கேன் பத்தொன்பது ரூபாய். இப்ப குடிக்கிற தண்ணீர்   மூலமாகத்தான்   வியாதிகள் அதிகம் பரவுது. தவிர, குடி தண்ணீர் இலவசமா  எங்கேயும் கிடைப்பதும் இல்லை.  கொடுப்பதும் இல்லை. இங்கு வர்றவங்க எதிரே இருக்கிற மருத்துவமனைக்கு வரும் ஏழைபாழைகள்தான்.  அவங்களால   விலை கொடுத்து தண்ணீர் வாங்க முடியாது. அவங்களுக்குப்   பயன்படுகிற மாதிரி  நாங்க எங்களை மாற்றிக்  கொண்டோம்.  ஒரு வருஷமா  இலவச  தண்ணீர்  வழங்கி வருகிறோம்.

எங்களுக்கு  கேரளாதான் பூர்வீகம்.  இங்கே பிழைக்க வந்து  இருபத்தேழு வருசமாச்சு.  அப்பா ஆவடி டேங்க்  பேக்டரியில்  ஃபோர்மேனாக   ஓய்வு பெற்றவர்.   நாங்க நான்கு சகோதரர்கள்.  ஒரு சகோதரர்  செங்கல்பட்டு பேருந்து நிலையத்திற்குப் பக்கத்தில் கடை போட்டிருக்கிறார். ஒருவர் கேரளத்தில் வியாபாரம் செய்கிறார். நானும்  அண்ணன் ஷிபுவும்  இந்தக் கடையை நடத்தி வருகிறோம்.  பதினைந்து நாள்  நான் கடையைப் பார்த்துக் கொள்வேன்.  அப்போது அண்ணன்  ஷிபு  குடும்பத்தைப் பார்க்க கேரளா போய்விடுவார்.  பதினைந்து நாட்கள் கழிந்து அவர் திரும்ப செங்கல்பட்டு வரும்போது  நான் கேரளா புறப்பட்டுவிடுவேன்.

நான் எலெக்ட்ரானிக்சில்  டிப்ளோமா படித்தவன்.  டீ  கடை  நடத்துவது குறித்து எந்த  வருத்தமும் இல்லை.  “என்ன வேலை செய்தாலும்  உழைத்து  வாழணும்.. தில்லுமுல்லு கூடாது என்று அப்பா  எங்களை வளர்த்திருக்கிறார்.  அப்பா தேவையான சொத்தையும் சேர்த்து வைத்திருக்கிறார்.  காலை நான்கு மணிக்கு கடையைத் திறப்பேன்.  இரவு பத்து மணிக்கு வியாபாரத்தை நிறுத்திவிடுவேன்.  கடையில் நான்கு பேர்  சம்பளத்திற்கு வேலை செய்கிறார்கள்.   எல்லாரும் உள்ளூர்க் காரர்கள்.

இந்தத்  தண்ணீர்  சேவைக்கு முக்கிய காரணம், எனது  கடையிருக்கும் கட்டடத்தின் உரிமையாளர் சேகர்தான். தங்கமான மனதுக்காரர்.  எங்களை காலி செய்யுமாறு பலரும் அவரிடம் பேசினார்கள்.  அழுத்தம் கொடுத்தார்கள். ஆனால் அவர் எங்களைக் காலி   செய்யச் சொல்லவில்லை.  அதுமட்டுமல்ல, பல ஆண்டுகளாக  வாடகையையும் அவர்  உயர்த்தவில்லை.  அவர் எங்களுக்கு இப்படி உதவும் போது, நாமும்  பிறருக்கு உதவலாமே  என்ற எண்ணத்தில் எங்களுக்கு தோன்றியதுதான்  இந்த இலவச  தண்ணீர் வசதி.

வீட்டுக்கு  வரும் விருந்தாளிகளுக்கு வந்தவுடன்  பிரியாணியோ..  சாப்பாடோ தருவதில்லை.  குடிக்க  கொஞ்சம்  தண்ணீர் கொடுப்போம்.  தாகம் வரும் போதுதான் குடி தண்ணீரின் அருமை தெரியும்  என்பதில்லை.  காசு கொடுத்து தண்ணீர் வாங்கும் போதும் தண்ணீரின்  அருமை  புரியும்.  அதுவும் கையில் காசு இல்லாதவர்கள்  தண்ணீர் வாங்க  படும் அவதியிருக்கிறதே..  அதை விவரிக்க முடியாது.  ஒரு நாளைக்கு இரண்டாயிரம்  ரூபாய்   தண்ணீருக்காகச் செலவாகிறது உண்மைதான். மருத்துவமனைக்கு வரும் பெரும்பாலானவர்கள் எங்கள் கடைக்குத்தான் வருவார்கள். அவர்களால்தான் நாங்கள் பிழைக்கிறோம்.  அதற்கு கைமாறாக  இந்த  சிறிய  பங்களிப்பை நானும் அண்ணனும்  செய்யத் தொடங்கியிருக்கிறோம்.  எங்களது நோக்கத்தைத் தெரிந்து கொண்டதினால், அரசியல் கட்சிக்காரர்கள் கடை  அடைப்பு நடத்தினாலும்  எங்கள் கடையைத் திறந்து கொள்ள  அனுமதிப்பார்கள்.

மருத்துவமனைக்கு வரும் சாதாரணமானவர்களுக்கு   “குடிக்க  தண்ணீர் கிடைக்க வேண்டும் ..தண்ணீர் கிடைக்கா விட்டால்  அவர்கள் அவதிப்படுவார்கள் என்ற ஒரே காரணத்திற்காக  எங்களுக்கு அனுமதி தரப்படுகிறது’ என்கிறார்   பினீஷ்.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Source….. பிஸ்மி பரிணாமன்   in http://www.dinamani.com dated 13/10/2018

Natarajan

 

 

This 12-Yr-Old Boy Has Invented A Device Which Can Help Rid Our Water Bodies Of Plastic Pollution…!

Shocked at the news of the death of a pilot whale in Thailand due to consumption of plastic bags, Varun Saikia, a 12-year-old boy from Vadodara, wanted to design a machine which could help in cleaning polluted water bodies. Curious about the causes of plastic pollution prevalent in water bodies, he started researching more about the topic. Soon, he realised that it was a major global environmental problem and many countries have been grappling with the issue.

h “I thought of making a machine that would clean and collect all the floating plastic waste in rivers, ponds and lakes. Plastic floats on water bodies which makes it harder to scoop up and collect”, shares Varun Saikia, an eighth class student from Navrachana School, Vadodara. He came up with this idea in an attempt to combat the increasing pollution problems. His innovative device is named Makara which is designed to sweep the polluted ponds of our cities. What sets this device apart is that it is completely battery-operated which would reduce the manual work involved in cleaning.

Concerned about the increasing environmental pollution, he kept reading about adverse changes that have taken place all over the world as a result of pollution. He also came to know about the Great Pacific Garbage Patch and how it impacted ocean bodies on a major scale. He was distressed to learn about water pollution and he finally decided to come up with a solution which could be implemented in nearby localities and polluted water bodies.

What is Makara?

Makara is a concept that uses the fluid mechanics of water to direct the plastic towards the receptacle without using any extra force other than the same mechanism which drives the machine forward. It is a simple machine yet sturdy in its structure. Propelled by a basic motor and remote, it can be customised to increase its capacity by using a heavy-duty motor and making adjustments to pulley.

Based on its current capacity, it can collect up to three kg of floating garbage in one go.  The machine is ideal for catching floating Styrofoam cups, plastic bottles and bags and dead floating insects. What makes it unique from other pond and ocean cleaning devices is its mobility in water bodies. Another added advantage of this machine is that unlike other models, it doesn’t need to be installed around the polluted water bodies. It could be effortlessly used to clean swimming pools as well.

Varun narrates, ”This model is made up of a paddle wheel operated by a motor and a pulley. It can be controlled using a remote. The paddle wheel pushes the vessel ahead and navigates the floating garbage to the net tail bin. The tail bin is attached to a basket which could be removed to unload the floating garbage collected inside it.”

He opines that using such simple models could extensively contribute in clearing garbage from polluted lakes and ponds. Apart from this, it would also be beneficial for the manual labourers working nearby dirty ponds or municipal workers cleaning these polluted water bodies as it is hazardous to their health and well-being. Scaled up, this model can work on larger bodies of water and even oceans. It could help to save our marine life and balance aquatic ecosystem largely. Talking of his future plans, he shares, “With heavy duty motor and bigger scale model, this vessel has the potential to clean up the coastal areas and it could be even workable on oceans. With proper funding, I wish to use this model to sweep oceans too. I even plan to make it energy efficient by generating hydroelectricity in future.”

He aims to develop this model so that he could view it working on a larger scale. What sparked his curiosity about increasing pollution has led him to design a model which would help to eliminate this problem. Such young ignited minds are taking the winds of change ahead.

Source….Ankita Singh in https://thelogicalindian.com/

Natarajan