The controversy over the credit of the script of 3 Idiots notwithstanding,the latest Bollywood movie undeniably celebrates the innovator.
And the credit for one of the innovations cycle-powered horse hair clippers goes to a man of Meerut,Mohammad Idris,who is happily enjoying the limelight.
I had not entered into any agreements with the film producers,yet they sent me a cheque of Rs 10,000, he says,while talking about his simple yet amazing invention that attracted producer Vidhu Vinod Chopra when he had approached the Ahmedabad-based National Innovation Foundation (NIF) to get creative ideas for the movie. Two other inventions,scooter-powered flourmill and exercycle-cum-washing machine,of NIFs Jahangir Painter and Remya Jose,too,made a debut in the film.
Impressed with the films of my machine,they (the film producers) approached me and called me to Mumbai. Later,I was taken to Ladakh for the shooting in September 2008, says Idris,who is shown briefly clipping a sheeps hair in Rancho aka Phunsukh Wangdu’s (Aamir Khan) school of innovation in the movie.
As it happens mostly,this innovation too was prompted by the need to rid hardships. Earlier,we used hand clippers but they were expensive and also difficult to operate. I succeeded in converting the hand-run clippers into cycle-powered clippers in 2003, said Idris,who is in the clipping business for the past 20 years.
The new machine was not only easy to run but proved economical, he says,recalling how his income doubled when he started using the machine.
Later,a team from NIF,Honey Bee Network,Sri Raghvendra Institute of Science and Technology (SRIST) located him and brought his backyard invention into the mainstream business. He got the coveted Innovation Award in 2005.
President APJ Abdul Kalam gave me the award and patted my back, says Idris,who has also got the machine patented in his name. I have sold over 20 such machines to contractors in areas like Bulandshahr,Pilibhit and Bareilly.
A resident of Hasanpur Kalan in Meerut,Idris had begun as a barber,his family profession. We shifted to horse clipping profession later as it paid better. Now,this has brought national fame to me. People of my area are treating me as a hero after watching the movie.