SoUL project receives Prime Minister's Award for Excellence 2017
The Solar Urja Lamp (SoUL) Project of Dungarpur, Rajasthan received the prestigious Prime Minister's Award (certificate and trophy) under Innovation Category. The award was presented by our Hon'ble Prime Minister to the Collector Dungarpur, on the occasion of Civil Services Day 2017 held in New Delhi on 20-21st April 2017. It was a tough competition, where, out of 830 applications, only 2 received the award under Innovation category. The Prime Minister also released a book, "New Beginning", on Innovations for the Prime Minister’s Award for Excellence, available online at http://darpg.gov.in/sites/default/files/Book-on-Innovations-released-by-Hon'ble-PM-on-CSD,2017.pdf. In the book, the integral role of IIT Bombay in the SoUL project is prominently credited (pages 53-56).
The SoUL project in Dungarpur was designed to provide solar study lamp to rural household (esp. rural school children) enabling them to study/work in the evening hours. The project is unique wherein tribal women assembled and distributed (sold) 40000 lamps, carried out the after-sales repair and maintenance, and opened solar shops to help provide continued support for the community's solar energy needs. Next, they are going to setup and own a solar PV module manufacturing plant, first of its kind in the country. IIT Bombay's team (Principal Investigators: Prof. Chetan Singh Solanki, DESE and Prof. Jayendran Venkateswaran, IEOR) conceptualised and designed the project, and implemented the same in partnership with Rajeevika (Rajasthan State Rural Livelihood Mission), Local Administration and the Cluster Level Federations of Self Help Group Women. More details of the project can be found at http://millionsoul.iitb.ac.in/Dungarpur/index.html