For 62-year-old Rajendra Jadhav, a farmer based in Nashik district of Maharashtra, it was a pleasant surprise when Prime Minister Narendra Modi made a mention of his name and praised his innovation during his "Mann Ki Baat" address on Sunday.
Jadhav, a farmer from Satana town in Nashik, has developed a sprinkling machine named 'Yashwant', which is currently being used by the local civic body to sprinkle disinfectants to curb the spread of coronavirus.
During the radio programme aired on Sunday, Modi made mention of Jadhav's sprinkling machine.
Jadhav, who has studied only till Class X, runs a workshop of farm equipment in which his family helps him.
Jadhav said he had developed the machine to spray insecticides in his farm.
"Coronavirus has created panic everywhere. PM Modi announced lockdown to prevent its spread. I made some changes in the machine and gave it to Satana Nagar Parishad to sprinkle disinfectants during the pandemic," he said.
With the help of the machine, roads, housing societies, doors and compound walls can be cleaned to curb the spread of the infection, he said.
"I am very happy that PM Modi has taken note of my work. Irrespective of my age, I will do more such work for the farmers and the nation," Jadhav, who had won the President's medal for one such innovation in 2017, said.
"The machine has two aluminium blades fixed on each side. These blades rotate, absorb air from opposite directions and spray the disinfectants using force. A 15-HP tractor can be used to operate the machine which can clean even 15-feet high walls. This machine has 600-litre capacity tank," he added.
Operating the machine needs minimal human intervention and thereby helps in curbing the spread of the infection, he said.
"We developed the machine in 25 days. It is currently being used by Satana Nagar Parishad (municipal council) to sanitise a 30 km area in the town," he said.
According to Jadhav, he has applied for its patent and also sent its design to National Innovation Foundation.