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January 07, 2008
Chronicle Editor @ Jan 07, 2008

Local techies celebrated at IT-BHU’s annual fest — Opulence 2008

Anuraag Singh

Varanasi, January 18 The grassroot innovators are poised to steal the show at the annual management festival of Institute of Technology (IT-BHU) — Opulence 2008—that kicked off here with a gun salute from a remote-controlled machine gun designed by none other than a school drop-out.

Twenty-two-year old Shyam Chowrasia had to bid adieu to his studies when he was in the eight standard, but today he rubbed shoulders with the top brains and academicians as he showcased his multi-barrel machine gun that can be operated through a remote control.

The gun can fire both missiles and 155 bullets at one go up to 500 metres through a remote control device operated from a maximum of 50 metres, Shyam told The Indian Express on Friday.

However, Shyam’s journey so far has not been smooth. He lost his poet father when he was just 15. Though it was difficult for him to meet ends, it did not deter him from having his own creation- a missile gun-and fulfil his dream of presenting it to former president of India, Dr AP J Abdul Kalam.

After failing to meet Dr Kalam in 2005, a dejected Shyam dismantled his own creation in a fit of rage. But soon he got support from Dr PK Mishra, regional coordinator of Techno Entrepreneur Promotion Programme (TEPP) of Department of Science and Technology (DST). In spite of the TEPP rejecting Shyam’s plea for financial aid for his creation, as he did not fulfil the minimum academic eligibility criteria, Dr Mishra helped him in joining the Aryan International School as a teacher of robotics.

He is not the lone grassroot innovator catching the attention of visitors here. Teenage Chandan Verma’s Rs 25,000 two-seater car and 18-year-old Vimlesh Kumar Gupta’s ‘Automatic Crossing Barrier’ aimed at reducing rail accidents are the other star attractions here.

Vimlesh has developed the automatic barrier, which as the name suggests will ensure that the unmanned railway crossing gates close and open automatically.

“Both Chandan’s car and Vimlesh’s technology are certainly interesting and must be modified further to become commercially applicable. We are sending both the proposals for financial assistance under DST’s TEPP project,” Mishra said.