Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Monday launched an initiative to end the practice of manual scavenging in the state and deploy robots to clean the sewers. ‘Bandicoot,’ a robot developed by startup Genrobotics, will gradually be deployed across the state after testing it in Thiruvananthapuram, reported The New Indian Express.
Armed with four limbs and a bucket system, it can be lowered into manholes, shovel garbage and sewage, and clear blockages. It is enabled with WiFi and Bluetooth, reported news agency PTI.
From now on, robots will clean manholes. Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan launched the initiative in Thiruvananthapuram. It is hoped that this technology will bring an end to the dangerous practice of cleaning sewers manually. pic.twitter.com/wSZlj2YV4a
— CMO Kerala (@CMOKerala) February 26, 2018
Taking to Twitter, the Chief Minister said, “From now on, robots will clean manholes. It is hoped that this technology will bring an end to the dangerous practice of cleaning sewers manually.”
The launch of Bandicoot was done in Thiruvananthapuram yesterday, in association with the Kerala Water Authority (KWA), which had also conducted research on the issue. Genrobotics’ project was funded by Kerala Startup Mission (KSUM), a nodal agency of the state government.
The twitterati community was filled with positive thoughts for the move that takes away a very risk filled employment option:
In today's modern times it's actually unbelievable that many of our Indian states specially many of the northern ones in particular are still involved in the process of manual scavenging. With this innovation Kerala has set an example.
— Dennis Zacharia (@ZachariaDennis) February 27, 2018
Very progressive, we must value the lives of manual scavengers. @ArvindKejriwal @sethi_lakshya@AamAadmiParty
Kerala aims to end manual scavenging, to gradually deploy robots across the state https://t.co/pi5yMeTBZa via Dailyhunt Download Now https://t.co/Sd5HqrlPfG
— Himanshu (@Himansh83891303) February 27, 2018
The Left Front government in Kerala deploys a product emerging from its Startup Mission to put an end to manual scavenging
If this works, should be deployed across the country #KeralaModel
Also, good model for the kind of returns one expects on state-funded startup missions https://t.co/kTgmK6SS32
— Deepa Kurup (@deepakurup) February 26, 2018
Many called out Modi, asking him to follow the example of the Kerala CM:
Modi has all the money in the world to spend on Bullet trains. But Has not taken any single step towards abolition of manual scavenging!
Whereas, Kerala CM has done it. Congrats Sir. We are with you! 😊👌 pic.twitter.com/CV8IsBonUR
— Keerthi🌹 (@TheDesiEdge) February 27, 2018
Modi talked about Artificial intelligence.
Kerala implemented Artificial intelligence.
— Suvarna Haridas (@HaridasSuvarna) February 20, 2018
Inputs: The Indian Express, PTI