For Uttarakhand girl Akansha Guha, 16, her father, an army man, had always been a hero and an inspiration. But then, a year ago, when he suffered an accident causing a severe spinal injury, Akansha felt helpless.
Disturbed by seeing her father writhe in pain everyday while bending down over the wash basin, Akansha decided to try and do something to help him out.
"Whenever he used to bend, he cried. He had to spread his legs and bend so that there is no pressure on his spine. Seeing my father's trauma, I wished there had been a switch which I could press making the washbasin rise," said Akansha, a student of Class 10 at Army Public School, Lansdowne.
At that time, she was working on a project to invent a device which would help people carry luggage easily while crossing railway platforms.
"I was trying to invent a device that could make transportation of luggage an easier task, but I left it in the middle," she said. "I decided I would make a wash basin that could be adjusted according to people's height." "I thought I should make something that lessens the suffering of my father and other people who are facing similar problems," said the Pauri Garhwal resident.
With the help of a power-controlled motor and flexible inlet and outlet pipes, the idea of the movable wash basin was realised. Now, a prototype of the model has been developed with the support of Gujarat based organization National Innovation Foundation (NIF).
Akansha's innovation has won the IGNITE award, 2014 - a competition organised by NIF and a few other similar organisations. She will be awarded by former president APJ Abdul Kalam on November 19 at IIM, Ahmedabad.
When schoolmate drowned
Uttarakhand boys Yatharth and Samraddh too invented a life-saving device for swimmers after a boy from Yatharth's school in Pantnagar drowned while learning how to swim.
The incident left a scar on his mind and along with his younger brother, Samraddh, he decided to make a device that could avert such tragedies.
They came up with the idea to make a device which can set off an alarm if the swimmer is under water after a set number of seconds which would be based on the swimmer's breath retention capacity.
"Under normal circumstances, when a learner will be with his head out of the water, a transmitter fitted on the helmet of the swimmer will keep sending green signals to the receiver signifying that the swimmer is safe but as soon the swimmer will go inside the water, the receiver will show a red light," Samraddh said.
The red light will keep the trainer on alert mode, added Samraddh. "It is a great invention which can save many lives," said director of NIF Vipin Kumar on the device.
Yatharth and Samraddh have also won the IGNITE award, 2014 and will be awarded by former president APJ Abdul Kalam.