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Delhi Government Working Towards Robotic Solutions For Cleaning Sewers, Septic Tanks

Robots to clean sewers, septic tanks in Delhi? Find it out here

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FILE - A visitor shakes hands with a humanoid robot at 2018 China International Robot Show in Shanghai. (VOA)

In an attempt to fully eradicate manual scavenging from the Indian capital, the Delhi government is working towards robotic solutions for cleaning sewers and septic tanks.

To achieve this goal, Delhi Cabinet Minister Rajendra Pal Gautam convened a meeting with experts from IIT, Delhi Technological University (DTU), New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC), Delhi Jal Board (DJB) and Delhi Cantonment Board among others to discuss the possibilities and the need of robotic solution to sewer cleaning task, the government said on Thursday.

The idea was inspired from a Robot named Bandicoot, developed by Kerala-based start-up Genrobotics, that has been commissioned by municipal bodies in Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh.

About 80 manual scavengers have been trained in these states to operate the robots in a bid to offset the loss of livelihood.

Bandicoot, a semi-automatic robot, only requires a human operator to stand on the street near the manhole.

technology addiction
It is a natural thing for man to become dependent on technology, and also addicted to it. Pixabay

“The machine with its many cameras, a robotic arm with 360 degree mobility, and a handy bucket to collect the waste does the work. The operator is only needed for navigation when the manhole is of non-standard size or there are multiple sewer lines below,” a statement said.

“The Delhi government has already taken up various efforts to stop the inhuman practice of manual scavenging and would soon introduce fully mechanised system to clean the sewage system and septic tanks. Still there is a need for robotic solutions for smaller lanes and by lanes where machines cannot go,” the Minister said.

During the meeting, experts from Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) said the robot is not constructed for the condition of Delhi. So they suggested that the DJB approach the company for demonstration and feasibility to use such machine in Delhi.

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While some experts suggested usage of censors in the manhole to check the status of toxic gases, some others suggested a database control room for various sewer line related data and a Helpline number for the same.

“The DJB has been asked to constitute a committee for implementation of various methods to use robot and other type of technology. The government will ensure funds to DJB for this purpose,” the Minister added. (IANS)

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Delhi Breathes Hazardous Air, Once Again

It has predicted a "no significant improvement" in the air that we breathe, at least immediately

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Pollution
Toxic high pollution in the Delhi-NCR is not only taking a toll on people's health but is also adversely affecting their skin. Pixabay

Delhi on Monday woke up to hazardous levels of air quality, once again, with the index hitting a whopping 582.

Delhi’s overall pm 2.5 level reached a maximum of 555, while pm 10 levels reached a maximum of 695. Both are prime indicators of how bad or good the air quality is.

Meanwhile, AQI levels in suburban Noida also touched 444 which is unhealthy, but Gurugram remained relatively better at 282, which is also unhealthy.

Delhi
The AQI index of Delhi is at emergency levels. Pixabay

The Centre-run System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR) on Sunday advised Delhites to reduce prolonged or heavy exertion. “Take more breaks and do less intense activities. Asthmatics, keep medicine ready if symptoms of coughing or shortness of breath occur. Heart patients, see a doctor if you get palpitations, shortness of breath, or unusual fatigue,” it said in an advisory.

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SAFAR in its air quality forecast said: “Under the calm, cold and moist conditions, dense fog is likely for the next 24 hours. Few biomass fire counts are observed, no significant biomass fire pm 2.5 contribution is expected in the coming days.” It has predicted a “no significant improvement” in the air that we breathe, at least immediately. (IANS)