Imphal: A huge pile of used plastic bottles in every nook and corner is a common scene in our country today. However, Usham Krishna Singh of Manipur thought of tackling the menace in a unique way.
Singh, a resident of Chingkhu Awang Leikai in Imphal East district, decided to manufacture brooms out of disposable plastic bottles with the help of his son Usham Ashok Singh.
A few months of hard work and Krishna finally succeeded in making the unique brooms which look similar to the conventional one made of bamboo.
In the beginning, simple tools were used in making the brooms and it took about 45 bottles and 15 days to complete one final product. With the passing of days, things started progressing. “We have now developed a simple machine designed by ourselves and the machine takes only 2-3 days,” said Usham Lenin, who works in Singh’s unit.
For manufacturing one broom, 30 bottles of one litre capacity are required. Using a file or horse-knife, the plastic bottles are sliced to very thin strips, which are then made rigid with a hot-air gun, usually used in mobile phone repairing. It is then attached to a long bamboo stick to make it more durable.
The cost is kept minimal at Rs 150–200 depending on the variant. With the innovative product growing popular, Singh is generating income for his villagers.
He has formed a self-help group called Usham Bihari and Maipak Plastic Recycle Industry. “There is a huge demand now. We are not able to make up to the numbers.
With the growing numbers of unemployment in the state, we believe that this industry will at least help in giving employment to a few,” said Usham Lenin.
The industry is yet to get any financial help from the government. Despite this, the spirits are high for all the workers. Besides disposable plastic bottles, they want to use other single-use plastic items like plates, cups, and straws in the production process, and want to come out with more people-friendly products.
Residents of this small locality now urge all like-minded people to come out in large numbers to fight this ever-changing global issue. “If you love your environment, save your environment,” added Usham Lenin.