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Innovations travel from 3 Idiots to IIT-B

mumbai Updated: Jan 05, 2011 02:14 IST
Kiran Wadhwa
Kiran Wadhwa
Hindustan Times
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In the Bollywood hit, 3 Idiots, when actor Aamir Khan starts his own school for innovations, the first innovation you see is a scooter engine being used to generate energy for a sprayer, washing machine and grinder.

The same scooter, which was originally developed by Sheikh Jahangir from Jalgaon, will be making its way to the Indian Institute of Technology - Bombay (IIT-B) as part of its annual technology festival, Techfest, which will be held from January 7 to 9.

The scooter and 11 other exhibits from the National Innovation Foundation (NIF) will be part of the Grassroots exhibition. Grass roots is an initiative for uplifting technological innovations made by the common man and to industrially develop them.

“We will be working with the Foundation to develop these innovations so that they can be commercially viable and used by industry and people alike,” said Ronnie Phillip, coordinator, Techfest 2011.

NIF is an initiative by the Indian Institute of Management - Ahmedabad. The organisation is supported by the department of science and technology of the government of India. It has been providing institutional support in scouting, sustaining and scaling up green innovations from the grassroots and helping their transition to self-supporting activities for the past ten years.

“We have two main aims of coming to IIT-B. One is to spread the message of grassroots innovations and the second, and most important, is to rope in the engineering expertise of students to help develop these products,” said Rakesh Maheshwari from NIF. “Most of these innovations are by people who are not even degree holders. They developed these ideas to solve their everyday problems but they are not commercially viable. We are hoping IITians will help with that.”