A young innovator from Assam, Navajit Bharali used his life experiences and self learning techniques to revolutionize the lives of people with his innovations. He came up with the innovative invention of a ‘spinning cum reeling machine’ and an ‘electronic chair bike’ for the specially-abled. He has not only transformed the tedious process of reeling and processing of silk with an automatic machine capable of processing different types of silk. But also, developed a hands free electronic chair bike that works on the simple principle of body pressure to bring a positive transformation in the life of specially-abled people. His innovations can be traced back to his childhood from where he acquired the passion for mechanics. He had a pampered childhood, as he was the youngest of the three sons. At that time radio was the most prized possession his family had. He recalls, that once during his childhood, his father had broken the radio out of anger. However, his brother who had a knack for tinkering with things somehow managed to fix the radio. Soon, this incident resulted in many villagers coming to Navajit’s brother to get their radios fixed whenever a problem arose. Navjit used to keenly watch from a distance as he was not allowed to touch anything.
It was only after his brother went back to join his duty at the CRPF, that Navajit entered his brothers workshop and began to dismantle everything in his sight. His curious nature would often lead him to open electronic parts and try to configure different mechanisms. Soon through numerous trial and errors, Navajit excelled in fixing TV’s, Tape Recorders, Inverters etc. Navajit being a resident of Assam realised that silk weaving although being a traditional practice of every household in his area was tedious and cumbersome. His first innovation was in standard 6 when he developed a spinning and reeling machine. This is a compact machine for simultaneous spinning and reeling of different types of silk including muga silk and eri silk. His machine simplifies the tedious procedure just by the simple addition of DC motor. This machine provides a remarkable output where winding one bobbpin took only 4-5 minutes as compared to 1 hour taken to complete the process with hand. He cleverly imitated the rotating mechanism of the fan to make the reeling machine hands free. His simple innovation helped in reducing the work load and time of women in the village. By the time he reached 12 standard, he made 5 machines which included 2 spinning machiness, 1 reeling machine and electricity disconnecting machine. Presently his machine is being value added at IIT Manipur. Navjit felt motivated when he came in contact with the Honey Bee Network and started working on his next innovation ‘The Electronic Chair Bike’. He made his first prototype for 5000 Rupees using parts from kids bicycle. His prototype was made with 3 wheels which obstructed smooth turning. The improved version was then developed with the support from NIF. The improved version included 4 wheels and only a slight body movement of the user to control the chair. The Maximum speed of the chair is 40km/hr. Some parts of the chair are also detachable which makes it easy to be packed and carried. Navajit Bharali is a true innovator who with his modest nature believes that everyone should have a decent standard of living and thus strives to bring about positive transformations in the lives of the people.