The Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) has introduced three advanced robots named ‘Bandicoot’ to clean and maintain city manholes safely without workers entering into the manholes. This initiative is in alignment with the vision of Pune Smart City to bring more safety in the maintenance of city manholes using advanced technologies.
Manual scavenging requires humans to enter manholes and clean them physically and this practice has claimed the lives of many workers. To solve this challenge, PMC is now using robots to clean sewers.
The Municipal Commissioner Vikram Kumar launched the Bandicoot Robots on 2 May at Pune MC office. Other dignitaries like the CEO of Pune Smart City Dr. Sanjay Kolte, Additional Commissioner of Pune Municipal Corporation, Dr. Kunal Khemnar, M L A alongwith others attended the event.
This initiative gives safer and dignified job opportunities to the sanitation workers as robot operators with training and rehabilitation programs. The user interface of the Bandicoot Robot is designed for manual scavengers, which is interactive, and user friendly, and would offer a dignified work profile to these workers as well.
The Bandicoot robot is the world’s first manhole cleaning robot developed as ‘MakeInIndia’ and ‘Swachh Bharat’ initiative by National Award winning start-up – Genrobotics. Bandicoot robot comes with a human comparable robotic arm and various sensors that help the robot to perform the cleaning action more efficiently.
These robots are also featured with special 4 IP68 waterproof cameras to clean the manholes in a more precise and efficient manner, even under low light conditions.
Bandicoot Robots can do every action a human can perform inside the manhole, and can clean manholes more efficiently and effectively than a human by using the most advanced technologies like robotics and AI.
It is also equipped with poisonous gas sensors, which help the operators to know the presence of poisonous gases inside the manholes, as this is one of the most common reasons for the manhole accidents.