A man from Tamil Nadu has won the National Award for Innovation for designing a special, remote-control operated toilet-bed for his ailing wife.
S Saravana Muthu, a welding labourer living in Nagarcoil knew what it was like to be bedridden, having experienced it second-hand after his wife became bed-ridden two months ago.
The bed he has designed consists of a flush tank and a closet and an opening in the middle. It is connected to a septic tank away from the bed. The bed can be operated using the remote control so that even the occupants themselves can open the hole in the bed and flush the toilet with just a click of the button.
According to the innovator, the special bed was meant to reduce the distress of people like his wife who often lose their independence, dignity and privacy upon losing body motility.
The innovation won Muthu the second prize at the National Innovation Award competition held by the National Innovation Foundation, an autonomous body under the government of India.
According to a report in India Times, Muthu's wife Krishnammal, who is 40-years-old, had a surgery in 2014 and had to remain in bed for the next two months. Watching her, Muthu realised the difficulties faced by those who cannot move.
The innovator, who turned his life around from being a welding labourer, won Rs 2 lakh prize money along with the Innovation award and also reimbursements to the tune of Rs 35,000 to cover the costs of the prototype. He received the award from the President of India Ram Nath Kovind himself during a ceremony held in Gujarat on March 15.
Muthu, who is the son of a car mechanic, started tinkering with car-parts early on. According to the Foundation's website, he now owns an engineering shop and teachers local students machining and fabrication and helpsthem along intheir class projects.
Apart from the award, Muthu's efforts were also appreciated on social media.
Innovations like remote-operated toilet bed for patients that won #NationalInnovationFoundation award are testimony to the growing aspirations of common Indians to break the glass ceiling and achieve the unachievable by dint of their talent in #NewIndia. https://t.co/2n7xIhCOfs— Dr.Omkar Rai (@Omkar_Raii) March 23, 2019