Krishna Prasad (Visakhapatnam)
Hemesh Chadalvada is the latest teen wonder to join the brigade of celebrated social innovators. On the eve of Republic Day (January 26) this year, the 14-year-old was among 32 children conferred the Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar (PMRBP) award by prime minister Narendra Modi in a virtual felicitation ceremony for his newest innovation — a smart wristband which tracks the exact location of Alzheimer’s patients. The award includes a handsome amount of Rs.1 lakh plus a laptop/computer.
The younger of two siblings of Kishore Kumar, a sound engineer and owner of Technostic Creations, a recording studio, and homemaker Sandhya, and a class IX student of the CBSE-affiliated Jubilee Hills Public School, Filmnagar, Hyderabad, Hemesh picked up the nuances of computer programming in class VI. “Jubilee Hills Public is a fully-wired school which utilises and encourages learning of new technologies. However, the Internet has been my biggest mentor,” recalls Hemesh Chadalvada, whose list of innovations includes a roads pothole detection system, car accident alert device, robots for the elderly and a Smart first-aid kit.
Hemesh Chadalvada started ideating his award-winner smart wristband device because his grandmother suffered from Alzheimer’s disease whose main symptoms are memory loss and confusion caused by progressive degeneration of the brain, common among the elderly. In India, an estimated 4.1 million citizens are afflicted by Alzheimer’s and often lose their bearings and can never be found.
Encouraged by his parents and using his brain power, this young inventor started developing the smart device two years ago. “My plastic Smart wristband has been approved by the Bengaluru-based Alzheimer’s and Related Disorders Society of India and the society has asked me to develop a smaller version so they can roll it out nationally,” says this gifted teenage inventor.
Looking ahead, Hemesh Chadalvada is set upon a career in engineering. “My ultimate dream is to become an entrepreneur focused on developing products and services which will help vulnerable people in society to better their lives,” he says with disarming idealism.
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