We are happy to bring you the July - September-2021 quarter issue of the WIN Newsletter.
The country’s recovery from the covid19 second wave, which began
around June, continued over this quarter. Concern remains about
possible third wave, but it is tempered by larger vaccination numbers
as well as larger healthcare capacities established to meet future
India’s economy showed good resilience even during the second
wave, with encouraging recovery since mid-May. The GDP in Q1
(Apr-May-Jun 2021) showed substantial growth over Q1 of previous year
(Apr-May-Jun 2020), though the second wave was much more vicious than
1st wave, showing that some major segments of economy worked out
suitable means to continue to function during the covid outbreak.
Our project partners, both the field level NGOs and Institutions, are operating normally now.
Our last newsletter issue on innovations received very positive
feedback and also queries. We continue to scout for more innovations
and also scale up those already introduced earlier.
We have launched our online Skilling platform https://skillingtowin.org,
We offer this platform at no cost to the NGOs, Startups, Institutions,
and other skilling/training providers for any social impact
skilling/training programs, with the aim to enable them to reach wider
audience across the country.
From this issue, we start a Science in Action Series,
with articles in simple and compact form, which distill the learnings
of WIN and its project partners over years, and present science based
practical solutions, with examples, for critical challenges in our
domains facing the country. We have covered water governance,
wastewater management/water recycling, cleaning of Septic Tanks and
Sewerage lines. We will cover more in coming issues and we also welcome
articles from others. This is aimed to bridge the gap between
scientific literature and practical project applications
We hope you enjoy reading this newsletter, and look forward to your feedback.
We also invite contributory articles, case studies etc. for future issues, or suggestions for collaboration.
Director - India Operations
continues to address the critical challenges in the area of Maternal
and child nutrition. We have launched a new project in this in 5
villages in Sanand, Ahmedabad. It follows our multistakeholder
approach, with Samerth Charitable Trust as principal implementation
partner, with additional support from SMDT for nutrition training,
CTARA-IIT Bombay for nutrition recipe/analysis expertise and Mr.
Nikesh Ingle for women microentrepreneurship training
the iTIC Incubator at IIT Hyderabad, we had launched `WIN
Challenge - Track 1’ for AI/ML solutions for - Infant Child Growth and
Health Monitoring through photographs uploaded on cloud from regular
mass market smartphones. This is a critical part of solution for
malnutrition. The 2 selected winners have begun working on solution for
this critical challenge.
Foundation is again a category partner for the domains of (1) Water and
Sanitation and (2) Maternal and child health, for the National Bio
Entrepreneurship Competition (NBEC) 2021, organized by C-CAMP on behalf
of Department of Biotechnology. WIN Foundation has been the category
partner for NBEC -2019 & 2020 for these two domains.The grand
finale of this competition will be held in the month of December’21
continues to support adoption of innovations in our domains at
grassroots through various programs. In this we continue to (i) scout
for more relevant innovations, (ii) increase adoption through skilling
within the community to understand and use the
innovative technologies in the field.
We have launched our online Skilling platform https://skillingtowin.org.
It is based on the widely used openedx platform. We offer the usage of
this platform at no cost to the NGOs, Startups, Institutions and other
skilling/training providers for any social impact skilling/training
program, under their own banner. Our platform offers following:
a partner home page
partner can offer any number of courses to any number of students.
to define course curriculum and sequence, wide variety of course
content and reference material, evaluation including assignment,
discussion forums, and certifications.
will continue to maintain the platform on the cloud, at its own cost,
as a service to vast community of potential learners for such critical
skilling programs and the skilling/training providers. Please Indicate
your interest with basic details at https://lnkd.in/ddUHPtKr
Science in Action Series
Foundation's vision to support innovations for sustainable social
impact requires us to continuously seek science and technology which
can be translated to the field and adopted by communities, with help of
our NGO partners. Under this series, we aim to bring simple and compact
articles talking about actionable insights and solutions for challenges
facing our society, which NGOs, professionals, communities themselves
to improve the quality of life and work at grass roots, and also
improve public services and natural resource management. We present 3
articles in this issue and will bring more such articles in future
issues. We welcome contributions to this series.
Water and Sanitation – Challenges and Opportunities for enhancing governance in rural / tribal areas
Vora, Director, India Operations, WIN foundation, Dr. Yogesh Jadeja,
Founder and Director, Arid Communities and Technologies
touches every aspect of development and it links with nearly every
Sustainable Development Goal (SDG). It drives economic growth, supports
healthy ecosystems, and is essential and fundamental for life itself.
Some 2.2 billion people around the world do not have safely managed
drinking water services, 4.2 billion people do not have safely managed
sanitation services, and 3 billion lack basic handwashing facilities.”
– World Bank
Government of India has recognised the massive challenges in Water and
Sanitation domain and launched the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, Atal
Bhujal Yojana and Jal Jeevan Mission. Water shortages and poor quality
affect hundreds of districts. Our agriculture suffers from vagaries of
water supply, seriously affecting the food and nutrition security of
the country as well as livelihood of small farmers.
The annual natural water cycle provides us limited fresh water, mostly
during monsoon, stored on surface as well as in the ground and then
used over the season, till the next supply arrives. On the other hand,
the increased demand for water due to modern lifestyle and industry
have led us to over-use surface water and over-extract ground water.
This has lowered water levels and increased salinity in ground
water. This, coupled with pollution due to human and industrial
contaminants, has added to the water problems.
Before looking at solutions, a few key points worth noting: (i) While
items like petrol, gets used-up, i.e. converted to another substance,
water “usage” converts typically water to impure or polluted water.
Proper treatment and recycling can increase the supply of available
water. (ii) Nature’s water cleansing processes are inadequate for our
levels of pollution. E.g. Human waste will take many months to
decompose, while chemicals and plastics may take tens of years.
(iii) Agriculture uses about 90% of water. Optimized water use in
agriculture increases yield and also preserves soil health. (iv) Water
is basic to all life on earth. So it is also important to use
water in a manner which protects the living ecosystems around us.
Hence, governance model for water at various levels of government needs
to focus on: (i) conservation, (ii) optimized usage, (iii) recycling
and reuse of water.
Water governance also needs to be decentralized to the lowest
administrative levels, due to distributed nature of storage and
consumption and agriculture being largest user of water. Villages
panchayat and associated groups should form the bedrock of water
The newly launched Atal Bhujal Yojana and the Jal Jivan Mission offer
an excellent opportunity to create sound and long term water governance
structure, including policies, rules and regulations, protocols among
participating administrative bodies, with participation by all
stakeholders. This document, primarily talks of water governance
Objectives of Water Governance
desire water security, to ensure that their water demand for all uses
are met from the available water supply. Thus both supply and demand
side management is required.
The inflow of water in a village is based on rainfall, river, springs
or canal inflows brought to village. This water is stored in rivers or
springs, lakes, ponds, open wells and ground water aquifers. Water
storage optimization is the key need.
The largest usage of water is in agriculture, with other major uses
being family, cattle, and any industries located in or around the
village. Thus agricultural practices, including crops selected, have
the largest impact on demand for water. Optimized water usage, not only
conserves water, but also results in better agricultural productivity
and retains soil and water quality.
at the village level, the water governance system, should be centered
on the Village Panchayat. The system should include (i)
understanding Water supply and demand, creation and implementation
of water security plan and water resource management protocols. (ii)
impact measurement and corrective actions. Water Resource
Committees, together with Farmers groups, Women groups, and similar
bodies need to be involved as stakeholders and contribute to the
decision-making. Village bodies need to ensure non-discriminatory
decisions, so that water is provided in equitable manner to all.
Village panchayats can adopt suitable water policy legislation, in
coordination with neighboring villages as well as nearby industries.
This should be respected under the Panchayat act, with suitable methods
for dispute resolutions in minimum time through administrative,
arbitration or judicial means.
Cluster / Block / Taluka Level
rivers, canals and aquifers span across many villages and even
districts. Hence coordination is required at village-cluster, block and
taluka levels. At village cluster levels, the respective Panchayats
need to develop mechanism to coordinate and cooperate on demand and
supply issues. The taluka panchayats also need to play a role of
coordination, when required to resolve differences. This will help
village clusters to move from dependence to independence and then
to inter-dependence to ensure more long term stability in water
security, better ecosystem management, and economic and social progress.
District / State / National Levels
towns, villages, industries, forests - all of them impact and are
impacted by water governance in an interdependent manner. So a higher
level coordination at the District, State and national level is
required to ensure equitable solution for problems. E.g. The inevitable
expansion of urbanization and industrialization cause overdrawing of
water by the outlying urban colonies and reduces water for adjoining
villages. This document does not aim to define these higher level
While top-down approaches are important for initiating major changes as
well as maintain the accountability and direction at higher level, a
simultaneous decentralized approach at village and cluster / taluka
levels is essential to bring a transformational change through
participation by stakeholders at ground level. This alone can lead to
tackling current challenges in water in more efficient and sustainable
Traditional water conservation structures and practices were
implemented by village level skilled persons. Today it is imperative to
develop a village level cadre (called Bhujal Jankars or Jaldoots) with
training on traditional methods, upgraded with current technology and
processes. Constant upskilling is required to adopt new methods. They
need to understand water supply and demand, hydrogeology of the area,
weather and rainfall, water conservation and recharge structures,
testing and measurements, and ability to coordinate among various groups in the village.
The person should also have basic knowledge in agricultural practices
and be able to coordinate with external agriculture experts.
This also creates livelihood opportunities at village level. With such
a cadre, the Village bodies will have the knowledge and implementation
expertise support to implement important supply and demand side
Virtual Knowledge and Practice Excellence Centre
skilled cadre of respective villages, will form a team, to study the
cluster, block and taluka level issues and provide technical backup to
the solutions implemented. This team needs to be linked to level
experts from NGO’s, Institutions, Industry, Government, as required,
for guidance on more complex issues.
Data and data analytics have
emerged as a very powerful tool in all domains in twenty-first century.
It has huge potential in agriculture, with its diverse data sets,
huge amount of traditional and modern knowledge need to distill
learning and make it available to farmers. Extensive data, captured
from thousands of farms, on water, soil, weather, agricultural
practices, inputs and outputs, prices, over period of years, enables
farm level advisories for even marginal farmers cost effectively, and
has potential to vastly improve agricultural science. This will go a
long way to meet the farmer’s income needs and nation’s need to meet
challenges of food and nutrition.
Thus, over a period of time, this body will form multiple virtual
centre of excellence, capable of drawing from and contributing to
higher level expertise, and support diverse local conditions and needs.
Evidence through Action Research under the Participatory Ground Water Management Program by ACT:
of the above steps have been implemented under the Participatory Ground
Water Management project, carried out by Arid Communities and
Technologies, with support from WIN Foundation and Tata Power Ltd. In
cluster of 19 villages of Mandvi Taluka in Kutch district in
Gujarat, local youth were trained as Bhujal Jankars and in turn they
prepared village level water security plans in discussion with village
communities, under guidance from ACT. Supply side interventions and
demand side interventions were carried out followed by introduction of
innovations. Knowledge management systems were developed, including
protocols, processes and data system. This has enabled
replication in other locations: (i) Khambhalia area in Dwarka
district and (ii) Abdasa and Nalia talukas in Kutch, with suitable
adaptations for different hydrogeological, socio-economic, cultural
This has created a virtual centre of excellence with collective
knowledge within the community including the Bhujal Jankars, Farmers
and Women groups and village panchayat. Higher level expertise and
continuous training is provided by ACT, which also brings additional
expertise e.g. KVK for farming - KVK, and WIN Foundation for
innovations. For gender equity, Women Bhujal Jankars are being
increasingly trained and in turn they are initiating more activities
through women groups, e.g. kitchen gardens with marginal farming
families or ladies.
The local Panchayat bodies and Taluka development offices have
also supported these processes. Now, ABhY has adopted some
of these processes for scaling up at National Level and ACT has been
allocated 123 villages in Mandvi Block under ABhY.
is critical basis for life on our planet and essential for all aspect
of human progress and quality of life. In our highly integrated and
complex society, a knowledge and innovation based decentralized water
governance with supportive centralized structure and practices, is
essential for proper management of water for long term sustainability
of our planet.
To quote the father of our nation, Mahatma Gandhi, “The
earth, the air, the land, and the water are not an inheritance from our
forefathers but on loan from our children. So we have to handover to
them at least as it was handed over to us.”
We owe it to the future generation to take the right steps.
Note: Views expressed by author are personal. About the authors:
Dr. Yogesh Jadeja is the Founder Director, Arid Communities and Technologies (ACT, https://act-india.org/),
Bhuj, Gujarat, a dedicated organisation for Participatory Ground Water
Management. He has nearly 3 decades of experience in water
conservation. Dr. Yogesh Jadeja can be reached at his email id firstname.lastname@example.org, for any comments/feedback.
Mechanised cleaning of Septic Tanks: a socio-technological review
Linda Jasline, Bhavesh Narayani, Divanshu Kumar & Prof. Prabhu Rajagopal,
Solinas Integrity Private Limited and Center for Nondestructive Evaluation, IIT Madras
1. Societal context and Background
Dignity is an inalienable right which is part of the fundamental right to life. Justice systems all over the world have held human dignity to be the most important, fundamental, inalienable and transcendental of rights.
Yet, even after more than 70 years of independent India we find a
section of the society, the scavenging community, being deprived of
this and being predominantly engaged in the practice of manual
scavenging. The Supreme Court found in 2014 that there were over 9.6 million dry latrines
in India which required manual emptying. In other data points, there
are over 75 million households, which are connected to septic tanks
that may require manual scavenging, comprising 40% of the
households. Traditionally, entire cleaning of the septic tank is
done by manual scavengers, as shown below in Fig.1
Indian law, the Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and their Rehabilitation Act 2013, which
is the current law against manual scavenging, prohibits dry latrines
and all kinds of manual cleaning of excrement as well as cleaning
gutters, sewers, and septic tanks. This was an improvement from the
earlier 1993 law which only gave importance to dry pit latrines. The
act of 2013, apart from recognizing this dehumanizing practice arising
from the inequitable caste system, also recognizes how manual
scavengers are prone to serious injury and are always at a risk of
death. The act envisages that sewers should be cleaned mechanically
while manual scavenging will only be permitted in exceptional cases,
with safety equipment by the employer. If unfollowed, this is
considered a criminal offence even when it does not result in injury or
death. The offender can be charged with a maximum of five years
imprisonment and a fine of five lakh rupees. Additionally, an
association of safai karamcharis, called Safai Karamchari Andolan, led
by Bezwada Wilson
(Ramon Magsaysay Awardee) has been instrumental in bringing the
attention of common public to the issue and rehabilitating some of them.
Despite these efforts the practice continues unabated. Deaths arising from manual scavenging are commonplace in India, (1000+ people die every year cleaning these tanks) and there has been press attention
turned to the scavengers’ dangerous conditions of work in the National
Capital. A 2019 study done by the WHO (World Health Organization)
showed that “weak legal protection and lack of enforcement” of the laws
as well as the sanitation workers’ poor financial status (as the
rehabilitation schemes remain ineffective) were the major contributors
to the practice still existing. India is a federal democracy and
sanitation remains under the purview of the states. Hence the
implementation of the laws of manual scavenging remains under them,
without any compulsion and commitment. Though some municipal bodies
have begun adopting machinated sewer and septic tank cleaning in this
attempt, this is occurring at a very slow pace. Lastly, this is a
complex problem at the intersection of a complex caste system (shaping
public perception) and lack of technological development towards
solving this issue.
2. Technological Solutions from India/elsewhere addressing Manual Scavenging
Minimal effort was given to finding a solution for this demeaning problem for several decades and no lessons were
learnt from other countries in this aspect. In France giant balls,but
smaller than sewerage lines, are pushed using water at high pressure to unclog the sewers. Until now, there have been a few solutions that have been found in India. Some of the technologies that are available in
the Indian market for sewer system cleaning are sewer drain jetting
trucks, sewer jetting and flushing machines, gas detector masks, and
sewer cleaning robots.
from equipping the workers with technology, several rules must be
followed to ensure safety. Safety training is critical and all
employees associated with the job must undergo it. Written instructions
and procedures need to be provided to the workers and continuous
supervision during the job must be done. To operate the equipment, the
workers present at the site need to be familiarized with how to
operate. In addition to that, workshops are to be conducted at least
once every two years to update them on the improved methods and
techniques. Manual scavengers need training to use the dedicated
technologies available in the Indian market thus enabling them to live
a life of dignity.
3. The approach that may work
a socio-technological approach to solve this problem could provide us a
potential solution. Firstly we need to understand the problem of
cleaning fundamentally and then look at technological solutions.
Moreover we need to work on ground with people and empower them to
leverage these technologies for themselves, thereby contributing to
their financial well being.
hard sludge from the bottoms of septic tanks and sewer lines is vital
in the sanitation industry. Septic Tank is a poisonous environment,
filled with a semi-solid and semi-fluid human fecal material that makes
up about two-thirds of the tank. Diving further, the fecal sludge
actually starts solidifying into a clay-like substance and toward the
bottom it gets rock-hard. Once filled, they are required to be cleaned
every 2-5 years to stop sludge overflow and groundwater contamination.
However, this results in the gradual accumulation of un-pumpable sludge
at the bottom of the pit, which eventually fills the latrine and forces
it to be abandoned. This is where manual scavengers come into the
picture. The workers who are often assigned to clean the septic tanks
die due to suffocation, exposure to toxic gases, that results in skin
and breathing disorders. This is a stigmatized occupation that
operates from the underbelly of social negligence.
4. Solinas, an IIT Madras incubated startup developing HomoSEP Robot to aid Sanitation Workers for Cleaning Septic Tanks
team led by Mr. Divanshu Kumar at the start-up Solinas Integrity
Private Limited () in collaboration with Dr. Prabhu Rajagopal at
the Center of Non-Destructive Evaluation (CNDE), IIT Madras has been
developing the ‘HomoSEP’ robot for automated homogenization &
cleaning of Septic Tank contents. In the last year, the team has
successfully completed trials of the next version of HomoSEP robot
(v2.0) which is more rugged and miniaturized for portability under
laboratory, mock-up and field conditions. A start-up “Solinas Integrity
Private Limited” led by Mr. Divanshu Kumar and Dr. Prabhu
Rajagopal in collaboration with Center of Non-Destructive
Evaluation (CNDE), IIT Madras has been developing the ‘HomoSEP’ robot
for automated homogenization & cleaning of Septic Tank conHomoSEP
robot developed by Solinas Integrity Private Limited in collaboration
with Center of Non-Destructive Evaluation (CNDE), IIT Madras
HomoSEP robot will aid manual scavengers in cleaning the hard sludge
without entering the potentially dangerous atmosphere of a septic tank.
HomoSEP is a compact robot made up of five main modules. The bottom
module can homogenise hard sludge with water to create a pumpable
slurry, and the feeding machine module can push and pull the bottom
module inside a septic tank manhole at a depth of 3-5 metres. The
portable module is mounted on a mobile frame to
the whole robot at actual septic tank sites. The electronic module is
configured so that the entire robot can be operated by the manual
scavengers with a single remote. The suction module is intended to suck
the homogenised slurry from the Septic tanks.
solution, the HomoSEP robot will be available from December 2021 for
cleaning septic tanks. This robot will be operated by a worker
using a portable remote control panel and screen.
HomoSEP robot developed by Solinas
Integrity Private Limited in collaboration with Center of
Non-Destructive Evaluation (CNDE), IIT Madras
Prof. Makarand M. Ghangrekar, Prof. Brajesh K. Dubey, Mr. Indrajit Chakraborty, Mr.Shreeniwas M. Sathe
Department of Civil Engineering, P. K. Sinha Centre for Bioenergy and
Renewable. School of Environmental Science and Engineering. Indian
Institute of Technology Kharagpur
Need for water recycling:
In the current millennium, rising population and depleting natural
resources have compelled governments and other non-government
organisations to rethink their national, business and international
strategies. This reshaping of the present technologies, business models
and government policies have been guided by the sustainable development
goals (SDGs) as set by the United Nations. Among the seventeen SDGs
framed by United nation as a roadmap, the SDG 6 speaks about clean
water and sanitation for all. In addition, the SDGs 3, 9, 11 and 12 are
also influenced by the water cycle. For instance, the SDG 3 targets
health and well being, which is directly connected to providing clean
and potable water to all. Similarly, SDG 9, which talks about
industrial innovation and infrastructure development, connects the
water recycling industry both in terms of technological innovation for
affordable treatment and infrastructural development to support such
defining the SDGs and their impact on the water usage and vice-versa,
it can be understood that the wastewater treatment and recycling can
contribute to the SDGs. Put in simple words, the treated water from the
sewage and effluent treatment plants can be treated to such an extent
that would enable its recycling for different non potable industrial,
institutional and domestic usage. Such usage would reduce the stress on
the fresh water reserves and also the cost of water treatment
infrastructure. This would also create more hygienic water practices as
presently, large portions of developing nations discharge wastewater in
natural water bodies due to lack of proper sewage treatment facilities.
Discharge of such untreated water impacts the life on aqua as well as
terra. Hence, treatment and recycle would again contribute to the SDG
14 and 15, which talks about reducing pollution load in marine and
building on the SDGs, government agencies as well as private players
are adopting to this paradigm change and investing research, resources
and framing recycling models for future setups. The Indian scenario is
no different and the Government of India has also devised several
strategies and projects for conservation of water resources. Pollution
control boards, municipal bodies and different local regulatory and
civic authorities across the country are focusing on wastewater
treatment and reclamation projects as compared to the previous
treatment and discharge policies. At this juncture, although such
projects can achieve treatment of wastewater, however several factors
intimidate the end user towards the reuse of this treated water. The
risk of bacteriological and pathogenic contamination, the quality of
treated water not meeting the discharge standards and the fear of
infringement of personal hygiene reduces the acceptability of such
practices. For ensuring reliability and transparency, the designed
systems must be well tested prior to implementation in public domain.
Additionally, to lure the corporate players the treatment cost offered
by such systems should be reasonably low to out-compete other water
sources in the water scarce regions of the country.
Glimpses of technologies involved:
Different technologies are involved in wastewater treatment for
facilitating reuse. The treatment technologies can be broadly
classified into primary physical operations, secondary biological and
biochemical processes and tertiary adsorption, advanced oxidation,
coagulation ion exchange and membrane filtration processes. The list is
indicative and with continuous research and development newer
technologies are being introduced. In principle, the primary physical
operations, such as screens, grit chamber and sedimentation tank, are
installed to remove floating objects, gritty materials, and settleable
particles, respectively. A certain fraction of organic matter is also
removed during sedimentation.
secondary processes are majorly biological in nature, the mode of
operation being either aerobic or anaerobic. In case of aerobic
processes, the activated sludge process and its variations, aerated
lagoons, oxidation ponds are popular. Within the domain of anaerobic
digestion, expanded bed granular reactor, upflow anaerobic sludge
blanket reactor, anaerobic baffled reactor, anaerobic sequencing batch
reactor etc. can be named. The tertiary treatment processes are often
in the form of multigrade filters, membrane filtration for high
effluent quality, dialysis for removal of excess dissolved solids,
coagulation and flocculation, advanced oxidation processes (AOPs), such
as ozonation, chlorination and UV radiation for disinfection. For
treating wastewater to reuse quality, the AOPs are popular choice for
removal of refractory compounds, that are not removed in secondary
IIT Kharagpur team and activities:
The IIT Kharagpur team consists of Professor Makarand M. Ghangrekar as
the Principal Investigator and Prof. Brajesh Kumar Dubey as the
co-principal investigator. At IIT Kharagpur, the main theme of research
for the WIN Foundation project was the implementation of an effective
treatment plant with multistage tertiary treatment to produce treated
water of non-potable contact reuse quality without the usage of
membrane processes. Hence, the treatment plant designed and
commissioned at the sewerage pumping station three inside the IIT
Kharagpur campus comprises of two stage biological treatment followed
by an optional chemical dosing assisted state-of-the art
settler-clarifier unit, dual media filter and three stage disinfection
units followed by an pressurized activated carbon filter. The final
treated effluent can be either circulated to meeting horiticulture need
and an in-house aquaculture pond or can be diverted towards the
in-campus agricultural fields and toilet flushing water, which is
proposed as future plan. The block diagram given below describes the
process flow diagram. The piping arrangement is designed to enable
bypass of any of the operational stage for the tertiary processes. This
bypassing arrangement is advantageous to test combination of the
installed disinfection/ advanced oxidation processes (AOPs). The three
stage AOP consists of ozonation, chlorination and UV radiation.
WIN Foundation modular treatment plant 300 m3 d-1 (a) Layout and (b) Real setup
Operation and monitoring of treatment plant
300 KLD treatment plant is under operation since January 2021 and has
been continuously monitored for the removal of the organic matter,
nutrients, surfactants, pathogens solids and dissolved ions. The
results of the operated ETP indicate that the installation is capable
of providing adequate treatment to domestic sewage and the water
generated can be used for non-potable contact usage. The plant is
capable of rendering satisfactory performance for wastewater reuse. The
overall performance of the STP is as presented below:
Total suspended solids
Volatile suspended solids
MPN# /100 mL
1.2 x 105
Anionic surfactant, SDS
Total organic carbon
# Most probable number of viable bacteria
results of the operated STP indicate that the installation is capable
of providing adequate treatment to domestic sewage and the water
generated can be used for non-potable limited contact usage. The plant
is capable of rendering satisfactory performance for wastewater reuse.
The capitalised operating expenditure for this plant was estimated as
Rs 15.87 per kL of wastewater treated with all three AOP combination.
Further identification and monitoring of different trace refractory
compounds has to be undertaken in next phase of research.
Broader vision and roadmap: The
case studies at IIT Kharagpur provides a roadmap that can be adopted in
other parts of the country for providing not only a safe sanitation
practice, but also an opportunity for curbing the demand on fresh water
reserves. In cities like Bangalore, the current water tariff from
tanker supplies soar as high as Rs. 50 per kL of water. Modifying the
larger urban apartment complexes with such modular plants capable of
producing pathogen free and clean treated water can reduce the cost of
water consumption. With the difference in electricity tariffs and
accounting for the difference in manpower cost, the cost of such
treatment can be kept as low as Rs. 17-18 per kL of water with the
present model. Thus replacing the non-potable fraction of water supply
with this treated water would lead to considerable savings.
addition to the work done by IIT Kharagpur, other IITs, state research
laboratories and CSIR labs are actively contributing to research on
water reuse. A more concerted effort in this direction can be achieved
by connecting the stakeholders and experts. The collaborative efforts
and knowledge dissemination is a pre-requisite prior to India
mobilizing towards such reuse practices. However, the advantageous
position of India is that majority of smaller cities and a fraction of
the megacities lack proper sewerage network and STPs. Hence designing
such STPs and corresponding reuse utlities from scratch would be an
easier job than retrofitting older establishments. Moreover, building
on the outcome of such case studies of the modular STPs, the city
planning and municipal regulations can be reframed to include mandatory
and/or incentivised land and building taxes for such buildings that
could practice such inhouse treatment of sewage and reuse of treated
water. At this stage of planning city planners and urban civic bodies
have to be brought onboard. Among other roadmaps towards achieving such
paradigm shift of treated water reuse includes convincing the end user
towards reuse of such water. This can be achieved by seminars and
awareness programs for which, government, corporations and
non-government organisations have to be brought in picture.
advantage of such decentralised modular STPs is that it can be further
adopted for peri-urban area and rural communities. However, in such
cases, training of local populace to operate the plant and recover
fertilizer and manure from the sludge produced and panchayat support
towards financial management have to be micro-planned for each specific
community. Easier said than done, such efforts of water recycling would
require nationwide skilling of environmental engineers and plant
operators, educating the general populace about the importance and
advantage of such reuse and more importantly convincing the bureaucrats
for adopting such policies at district and village panchayat levels.
WIN CHALLENGE – AI/ML FOR CHILD GROWTH AND HEALTH MONITORING
Foundation, with iTIC Incubator at IIT Hyderabad, jointly
organised the WIN Challenge – Track 1, in June-July’21. The
focus area of this challenge is `Child Growth and Health Monitoring,
using AI /ML’, a critical technology to tackle malnutrition in India.
The jury members of `WIN challenge’ selected two candidates, who,
together with their teams have begun work under the iTIC pre-incubation
program to develop technology for Child Growth and Health Monitoring,
with fellowship and domain-networking/mentoring support from WIN and
funding and mentoring support through iTIC-IITH.
NATIONAL BIO ENTREPRENEURSHIP COMPETITION (NBEC) – 2021
launched the sixth edition of the National Bio Entrepreneurship
Competition, # NBEC 2021, on behalf of the Department of Biotechnology,
Government of India on 16th August’21. This event was addressed by Dr.
Renu Swarup, Secretary, Department of Biotechnology, Government
of India & Chairperson BIRAC.
National Bio Entrepreneurship Competition (NBEC), organised by BREC - a
joint initiative of BIRAC and C-CAMP, is a national platform to
attract, identify, and nurture bio-entrepreneurs with path breaking
ideas for societal impact.
Foundation is again a category partner for NBEC 2021 for the domains of
(1) Water and Sanitation and (2) Maternal and child health. WIN
Foundation was the category partner for NBEC -2019 & 2020 as well
for these two domains.The grand finale of this competition will be held
in the month of December’21