The Surat Municipal Corporation (SMC) will be the first civic body in the state to purchase a robot for cleaning manholes. The Standing Committee of SMC on Thursday approved the proposal of purchasing the robot at a cost of Rs 40.69 lakh.
SMC officials in charge of drainage department visited Mumbai in December 2019 and saw the functioning of a manhole-cleaning robot. Impressed by its advantages, officials of SMC’s administrative department coordinated with Genrobotic Innovations, a Kerala-based company, and sought details of its transportation and functioning costs.
The administrative department then submitted a proposal before the Standing Committee to purchase a unit of Bandicoot V2.0, the manhole-cleaning robot. Chairman Anil Goplani and other members approved the proposal and gave the go-ahead.
Sources said that until now, SMC had been cleaning septic tanks and drainage line blockages using different machineries. The drainage line in the walled city area is old and several complaints of blockage frequent the SMC drainage department. However, SMC authorities struggled as it is difficult for suction machines loaded on heavy vehicles to function on narrow streets.
Chairman Anil Goplani said, “We have taken a good decision of approving the purchase of a robot for manhole cleaning. The machine is fibre-made, easily movable and user-friendly. It also gives details of the gases present in manholes on its display board. At present, we will purchase a single robot and after seeing its output, we will place an order of purchasing six more. Then, all seven zones of SMC will have their own manhole cleaning machines.”
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