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IIT Madras has developed a robot named HomoSEP.
If this robot is deployed extensively, it can put an end to the practice of manual scavenging.
HomoSEP stands for “homogenizer of septic tanks”.
It is a portable robot that has a shaft attached to blades that can open like an inverted umbrella when introduced into a septic tank. This is helpful as the openings of the septic tanks are small, and the tank interiors are bigger.
Moreover, the sludge inside a septic tank contains faecal matter that has thickened like hard clay and settled at the bottom.
Hence, this needs to be shredded and homogenized so that it can be sucked out and the septic tank cleaned. The whirring blades of the robot achieve precisely this.
Deaths due to Manual Scavenging
According to the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, in the last five years, there have been 340 deaths due to manual scavenging.
Uttar Pradesh (52), Tamil Nadu (43) and Delhi (36) lead in the list of deaths due to manual scavenging.
Source: This post is based on the article “Can this portable robot end septic tank deaths once it is deployed?” published by The Hindu on 20th Nov 2021.