On March 26, the director of IIT Kharagpur, Partha Pratim Chakrabarti, flagged off a truck bearing a small hoarding, which said, “Technology Transfer to the government of Tripura”.
It consists of five machines developed by IIT Kharagpur with four gas-based puffed rice making machines and one motorized de-husker.
This is the third consignment that is sent to Agartala. Around 22 machines have already been provided through earlier consignments, said P.B.S. Bhadoria, Coordinator of the Design Innovation Centre of IIT Kharagpur and Rural Technology Action Group-Eastern India. He heads the inter-disciplinary team at the Institute that has been making a major difference to the lives of the rural population by introducing new rural technology that makes their work easier or upgrading the technology that is already in use.
The two units in IIT Kharagpur making this possible are the RuTAG-EI and DIC. The first was set up in 2008 and the second in 2016 as part of the MHRD’s national initiative for design innovation. RuTAG has connected with more than 50 NGOs in West Bengal, Odisha, Jharkhand and Bihar, improving the life and livelihood of clusters of rural population in these states.
The machine devised by DIC has increased productivity by 500g/hr and is being used in Tripura. The government of Tripura and ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (MDoNER) have invested around Rs 40 lakh for the machines. Also, call for more consignments is increasing to deliver in Tripura and other North Eastern states.
The team is looking out for entrepreneurs to fabricate the machines. Every day they receive calls from distant shores – as far away as Malaysia, California and even Dubai.