Ranjan was part of a virtual conferencing with Prime Minister Narendra Modi

GANGTOK: The era of gadgets and technology is upon us, and what we once used to see in movies is now in our hands. When we mention movies, James Bond and his innovative gadgets were something that always inspired us. A classic line from the movie Skyfall in 2012 mentions, “Age is no guarantee of efficiency and youth is no guarantee of innovation” sums up how we see innovation in today’s time.

Connecting with Bond and his line, one youth in Sikkim is a guarantee of innovation. Meet, 15-year-old Ayush Ranjan from Rangpo Senior Secondary School, who was the only student shortlisted from Sikkim for the prestigious Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Purashkar 2021. He will receive the award from the Prime Minister on August 15 in New Delhi.

Ayush was selected in the innovation category of the award. The Class 10 student has three innovations that could give technocrats a run for their money. In February 2020, Ayush had won Inspire Awards in IIT Delhi. The following month, he participated in the Festival of Innovation and Entrepreneurship in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, hosted by the office of President of India. Following the two recognition, Ayush had applied for Bal Purashkar on the digital platform in July 2020. In January 2021, he was shortlisted for the award among 32 other children from the country.

Following his selection, Ayush was part of the virtual conferencing with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, “The PM inspired us, speaking on various endeavours of children across the country”, shares Ayush Ranjan.

The innovation drive for Ayush started at his school Rangpo Senior Secondary School in Mining, Rangpo at the school festival in 2019. “I knew about the app and web development, so I tried to make something for that carnival. I made software at that time. This was also the time when selection for Inspire Awards was going with every school shortlisting a candidate. I was fortunate to be selected by the Principal. I had developed a quiz software, which won the prize in the junior category in school”.

Digi Smart Bin

There is a garbage billing problem across Sikkim, and the scenario is no different in Rangpo. With some research from friends and support from Rangpo Nagar panchayat, he tried to develop a software which could make the system affective. The outcome was Digi Smart Bin developed by Ayush in 2019.

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Digi Smart Bin

There is a garbage billing problem across Sikkim, and the scenario is no different in Rangpo. With some research from friends and support from Rangpo Nagar panchayat, he tried to develop a software which could make the system effective. The outcome was Digi Smart Bin, developed by Ayush in 2019.

“Digi Smart Bin is an IT-based application which uses the IoT software. We stick a sticker worth Rs 1 on the dustbin. Whenever you throw the garbage in the garbage van, it collects your data and keeps a record of who is throwing the garbage. It is also effective in paying the garbage bill. Some people come every month to collect the garbage bill. I feel it is a waste of labour. Hence, we developed an online paying system for garbage bill. You get a notification every month by clicking on it and make the payment to the government directly.”

Ayush has filed a patent with the support from NIS and has received interest from companies wanting to adopt his idea. He even made a presentation to Municipal Corporation in Gangtok. He shares it is still in development with NIS Innovation Foundation. “I presented Digi Smart Bin in district level inspire awards, where I got selected. I did so at State level, I got selected there as well. Then I represented Sikkim in Inspire National Awards at IIT Delhi. There were 5 students selected from Sikkim, and I got shortlisted in top 60 from across the country, earning me the award. From there, I was invited by the Office of the President of India to participate in the Festival of Innovation and Entrepreneurship. I had also got selected for a trip to Japan, but sadly due to COVID 19, I could not go, and it got cancelled.”

Then again, Ayush tried to make a new module after his school adopted Atal Tinkering Lab. “It helped us a lot, and we try to discover new things.”

LPG Cylinder Delivery

In September 2020, Ayush and his friend Dhananjay Sahani thought of developing LPG delivering system as there was no LPG delivery system in Rangpo, or anywhere in Sikkim. “For refilling, we have to go to the distributor or stand in a long queue waiting for delivery. We tried to solve it by developing a device that is more like a cylinder trolley. It is also an application of IoT, it is connected to a server. The trolley costs around Rs. 70-80 and can also be used as a cylinder stand. It measures the weight of the cylinder and feeds the data to our server. When it gets empty, we directly place the order to the distributor. It sends the notification on your phone before the cylinder gets exhausted. The dealer already has data that your cylinder is about to get exhausted, improving the delivery system”.

If the person doesn’t want to refill, then there is the option for denying the delivery. “This will also prevent black marketing. If the cylinder is leaking, then you will get an SOS on your phone. For this, we won an award at Technofields Avishkar Megathon in IIT Delhi. We also presented in Kalam Drishti, organised by Atal Incubation Centre of Sikkim Manipal Institute of Technology. There we were competing with all the college students, and from other schools, we won the first position there with an award of Rs. 15,000. But more than the prize money, we also got access to incubation centre to develop the same. Unfortunately, we didn’t have time to make this as a startup. But there are plans to make it work”, shares Ranjan.

MushroomArc

Mushroom Arc was developed in December 2020. Ayush said, “It is a machine running powered app. It creates a Machine Learning Algorithm, which classifies poisonous and edible mushrooms. I have trained the app on various mushrooms, almost 1,000 variants. It has learned which is edible and which is poisonous. From the data, it derives the result with 96% accuracy. I am working on making it 99%, and apply for a patent and launch it in the market”.

Ayush’s work drew the attention of Chief Minister Prem Singh Golay, who congratulated him through social media. “With the Chief Minister of Sikkim acknowledgement, I was happy. So were my parents and school who have always been supportive”, shared the 15-year-old. He was born in Gaya, Bihar and came to Sikkim when he was two years old in 2007. His father works at Alkem Pharmaceutical Company as a manager, and his mother is a homemaker.

Ayush has the ultimate ambition of developing his own software company in Sikkim. For his various innovation, he was well aided by Rangpo Nagar Panchayat, Indane cylinders and SMIT. “Students and faculty at SMIT, see us as friends and want us to grow. They have been giving us free access to the incubation centre since last year. The interest among Sikkimese people is growing, we can accelerate it by improving the internet connectivity and mobile network. Mobile network is bad in Sikkim if that is improved, it will help Sikkim in its innovative ideas and come up with various startups”.

Ayush feels that the addition of Atal Tinkering Lab in his school shaped him to be an innovator. “The lab is helpful, with all the necessary equipment available. Whatever we want, we can get in the lab, we also have mentoring sessions from the provider. If there is any trouble, we can contact them”, concludes Ayush with an eye on more innovations in the future.

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