Pune Engineering Dropout Designs Low-Cost Prosthetic Arm For 700 People Who Lost Their Hands In Accidents

Follow Us On

One morning in Pune, Prashant Gade came across a seven-year-old girl who was born without both arms. Her plight hit Prashant hard, who coincidentally, was working at that time to design a robotic prototype of prosthetic arm. “Since my design was far from completion then, I offered to gift her prosthetic arms for both hands. But, a shocking reality awaited me,” he shares with Efforts For Good. The company he contacted for procuring two prosthetic arms quoted him an unbelievable price of Rs 24 lakhs, each costing Rs 12 lakhs. “A child will grow, so she must have to opt for a new pair of arms every two years. It is impossible for any person to afford it,” Prashant had regretted at that point.

Fast forward to the present, Prashant Gade is the inventor of Inali arms, India’s most affordable bionic arms to aid the differently-abled who lost their limbs. More than 700 people have availed the Inali arms and are all praises about it.

No one has ever become poor by giving
-Anne Frank

The crisis in India

Every year, more than 40,000 people lose their upper arms, but 85% of them are living without any solution. Most of them hail from the lesser privileged section – labourers who lose their arms in factory mishaps or citizens losing their hands in road accidents. Getting a prosthetic arm is a tremendously expensive affair for them, so they choose to live without it, often losing their work.

“Most of the prosthetic arms available in the Indian market are imported from Europe. But, there is no price control on these, so different doctors or agencies would quote different prices, ranging from Rs 1 lakh to more than Rs 15 lakhs. Going by the European market rate, a standard prosthetic arm would cost around 2 to 2.5 lakh rupees,” Prashant reveals the crisis in India, whose Inali arms cost not more than Rs 50,000.

Support the cause you care for. Browse All CampaignsBrowse all campaigns
Work in progress

Empower Poor Women To Rise Out Of Poverty

1,36,505 Raised
Out of 3,85,000

Share

 

Prashant quit college in his final year

For Prashant, engineering had forever been his aim. He grew up dreaming of designing innovative devices which can help bring a change to society. But Prashant Gade quit his dream course of electronic engineering in his final year. “It was a tremendous let-down for me. I would see my professors and fellow students concerned only about grades and rote-learning. I could not align myself with that attitude, depriving myself of creative thinking and practical experience. So I dropped out,” shares Prashant.

Inali Arms Prosthetic

He joined a six-month-long FAB training course, where he decided to make a robotic arm as his project. “I was inspired by Bionicohand maker Nicolas Huchet who had made a bionic arm for himself after losing his own hand in a work accident,” reveals Prashant. His encounter with the little girl without arms affected him deeply, which is when he strengthened his determination to develop a low-cost semi-bionic arm, not for profit, but solely to help the people in distress.

All you need to know about Inali arms

Prashant’s Inali arms mimic similar technology as the imported prosthetic arms, and parts of it are substituted by cost-effective alternatives. “We use different materials, mainly stainless steel for the inner machine, while silicone and polyethylene are used for giving it a more realistic outer look. To be honest, our initial prototypes were not that successful, as users complained about fitment problems and operational clumsiness. But, our latest upgraded version is made in such a way that the user can easily control his fingers by shoulder thrusts and gestures. We are working to further customise the design into a myo-prosthetic arm such that distinct finger movements can be performed, just like a normal arm,” Prashant explains.

Inali Arms Prosthetic

He named the arms after his girlfriend

He has named his invention Inali after his girlfriend, whom he admires for standing by him through thick and thin. “There was a time after I dropped out of college and my FAB course when even my own parents lost faith in me. There were a lot of struggles and obstacles. She supported me all through it,” he expresses.

Fixing the price of the Inali arms left Prashant in another fix for some time. He shares, “I met with a little boy in Mumbai who had lost both his arms in an accident. I proposed to his father to come to my lab in Jaipur and we would give him Inali arms for free. But, he straightaway declined. That’s when I realised that people doubt the viability and credibility of a product without a price tag attached to it, especially when the market rates were humongous. That’s when we fixed the price at Rs 50,000.”

Collaboration with Jaipur Foot

The Inali arms are designed my Prashant and his team at his new lab in Jaipur, in contractual collaboration with the famous non-profit Jaipur Foot. The arms have been given to patients all over India, where expert doctors perform the fitting, as mandated by governmental regulation. Prashant’s invention has been tried on and appreciated by his idol Nicholas Huchet.

Deependra Mehta, Technical Secretary of Jaipur Foot and the son of founder Padma Bhushan D R Mehta informed Efforts For Good about their work with Prashant Gade. “Prashant approached us two years ago with his initial prototype of the Inali arms. We agreed to support a determined young entrepreneur like him, and gave him rent-free lab facilities on a five-year contract basis. He supplies us with around 500 prosthetic arms every year, which is then distributed to the needy, free of cost.”

Efforts For Good take

At present, Prashant’s goal is to design a similar prosthetic leg using 3D printing and other advanced technology, alongside helping the Inali arms reach out to more people in need.

Over four decades ago, the Jaipur Foot created a sensation in India, owing to the millions of people it helped to stand up again. Prashant Gade’s invention is indeed another similar breakthrough in the technology field, where it is helping hundreds to feel independent and confident again.

For availing an Inali arm or helping an underprivileged person to get the benefit, contact Prashant Gade at 7875078907.

Love this story? Want to share a positive story?
Write to us: [email protected]
Connect with us on Facebook and Instagram

Let us know your thoughts on this story

Quote
It's not how much we give
but how much love we put into giving.
- Mother Theresa Quote

‘Happy Fridge’: The Key To Bridge Food Wastage And Hunger Problem In India

Follow Us On

Rahul Khera and Gautam Jindal, volunteers (aka hunger heroes) at Feeding India, were among the many Delhi NCR residents accustomed to seeing hungry children pick up half-eaten burgers or stale sandwiches from the dustbin and savour those with the brightest smiles. Like many others, they also had the will to promote equitable food distribution but was perplexed about the approach, until they learnt about the community fridge initiative which has gained unprecedented success in Saudi Arabia and few other European countries. Meanwhile, community fridges were already being installed outside restaurants or in public places in a handful of cities like Mumbai, Bengaluru, Kolkata, Coimbatore and Kochi.

Say Goodbye To Throwing Away Excess Food Because Now You Can Donate The Food To The Needy – Happy Fridge

Thank you for overwhelming response for the Happy Fridge concept. We need more funds from you to install more fridges like this across India. With the limited funds avaialble Feeding India was able to install three fridges only. Kindly donate here http://bit.ly/happyfridge

Posted by The Logical Indian on Saturday, October 27, 2018

Needless to mention, with a shocking 103rd rank in the Global Hunger Index and a food wastage estimate of around Rs 58,000 crore – India was perhaps the best country to implement such an initiative. With Gautam’s help, an enthusiastic Rahul invested his own savings to install a ‘Happy Fridge’ outside his residence at Sun City, Sector 54 in Gurgaon. Set up in 2017 by these Feeding India volunteers, the fridge in Gurgaon has inspired the NGO to scale up the project across India.

No one has ever become poor by giving
– Anne Frank

‘Happy Fridge’ fostered many smiles

It didn’t take long for the local residents to learn about this laudable endeavour. They welcomed it, as wastage of excess food was a recurring problem in almost every household. “Intimating the localities was no mammoth task, thanks to social media. However, it was difficult to spread the word among those who actually needed the food,” shares Rahul, who went from auto stands to slums, inviting rickshaw pullers, ragpickers or roadside vendors to avail the community fridge any time they feel hungry. “The security guards of our residential complex played a huge role in explaining how the fridge works to the beneficiaries,” he adds.

The operational and maintenance costs of the ‘ happy fridge ‘ are being maintained diligently by the community members.

Support the cause you care for. Browse All CampaignsBrowse all campaigns
Work in progress

Empower Poor Women To Rise Out Of Poverty

1,36,505 Raised
Out of 3,85,000

Share

Making memories, sprouting awareness

“I remember one young man who had arrived from a village looking for some menial day job. Somehow he had run out of his paltry savings and had no money to buy one decent meal a day. For about a month, our happy fridge was his solace, till he earned his first salary from a housekeeping job,” shares a jubilant Rahul.

In another incident, a truck driver returning in the wee hours of midnight was starving after a whole day’s hard work. He had run out of cooking fuel at his home, so our fridge was at his rescue.

“The residents keep all sorts of palatable dishes in the happy fridge, ranging from dry snacks, fruits to cooked meals. Sometimes, they even keep raw vegetables, to ensure not a single bit of good food ends up in their trash while other people go hungry to bed,” reveals Rahul.

On an average, each happy fridge supplies around 10-15 meals in a day. The gratitude and pure smiles of the hungry souls after a fulfilling meal are more than enough to continue to motivate Rahul and his neighbours. In fact, inspired by him, many other communities in the Delhi-NCR region set up community fridges in their areas.

Feeding India will set up 500 Happy Fridges

Since the past few years, Feeding India has been a prominent organisation working in the forefront to solve the hunger problem in India. Primarily, they were involved in redistributing leftover food from weddings and parties among the underprivileged people in different cities of India. Their volunteers, better known as “Hunger Heroes of India”, worked actively to bridge the gap between food wastage and food crisis.

“We used to get a lot of calls from individual households to collect their excess food. However, unfortunately, we lacked the manpower and planning to launch our programme on a door to door basis. We were desperately looking for an alternative when we learnt about the community fridges,” shares Srishti Jain, co-founder of Feeding India.

After interacting with Rahul Khera and other campaigners of community fridges, Feeding India decided to amplify this extraordinary project throughout the length and breadth of India. Presently, they have launched the #FightFoodWaste campaign to install 500 community fridges – nicknamed ‘ Happy Fridge ’. So any passer-by – be it a kid going to school without a lunchbox, or a labourer returning home late at night with no promise of a dinner – can now grab a pack of biscuits or a bowl of ‘dal-chawal’ (rice & lentil soup) to satiate their hunger. Click here to contribute for ‘ Happy Fridge ‘ and ensure India never sleeps hungry again.

Feeding India also urges everyone to make a promise to stop wasting food and instead consider donating it to those in need.

Let us know your thoughts on this story

Quote
It's not how much we give
but how much love we put into giving.
- Mother Theresa Quote
Next Click right arrow to read the next story Previous