Minutes of Core Group Meeting on April 15, 2011


Minutes of the Meeting of Core Group of RuTAG- IITD held on 15th April, 2011 in the CRDT Committee Room, IIT Delhi.

A Meeting of the Core Group of RuTAG, IIT Delhi was held on 15th April, 2011 in the CRDT Committee Room, IIT Delhi under the chairmanship of Prof. R.R. Gaur. Following were present:

  1. Prof. R. R. Gaur, Chairman, Core Group, RuTAG, IIT Delhi.
  2. Prof. S. N. Naik, Head, CRDT & Member, Core Group, RuTAG, IIT Delhi.
  3. Prof. S. K. Saha, PI of the Project on Evaluation and Standardization of Animal Driven Water Pump.
  4. Major S. Chatterjee, Senior Consultant, Office of PSA, Vigyan Bhavan Annexe, New Delhi.
  5. Dr. Jagpal Singh, (Contract), RuTAG, IIT Delhi.
  6. Shri Ram Gopal Agnihotri, Project Assistant, RuTAG, IIT Delhi.
  7. Shri Vibhash Trivedi, Project Assistant, Project on Comparative Study of Bullock Driven Tractor.
  8. Shri Raj Kumar, Project Staff of the Project on Evaluation and Standardization of Animal Driven Water Pump.
  9. Shri R.P.Tiwari, Special Invitee for textile related projects.
  10. Prof. Rajendra Prasad, Coordinator/PI, RuTAG, IIT Delhi.

Prof. R. R. Gaur, Chairman, Core Group of RuTAG-IIT Delhi welcomed the participants and started the proceedings of the meeting.

Agenda item No. 1.: Confirmation of the minutes of the last meeting of the Core Group:

The minutes of the meeting of the Core Group of RuTAG, IIT Delhi held on 28th February, 2011 were circulated to all the members/ participants. No comment had been received. The minutes of the last meeting were confirmed.

Agenda item No. 2. : Action Taken on the decisions taken in the last meeting:

  1.  RuTAG activities in Rajasthan:

Referring the action taken report on Problems in Rajasthan that had emerged during the RuTAG meeting held on 25th November, 2009 at Bharatpur, the low cost and more efficient Bio-gas Plant desired to be developed appeared to be very generic terms. Lupin Foundation which had raised this problem should be asked to indicate specific issues involved, desired to be attended to along with the detailed information/data such as how many Bio-gas Plants are available and presently in use in the area? Which type/design and size of Bio-gas plants are being used in the area? What is the average number of cattle available with the families? What are the actual problems? What are their specific requirements? After receiving detailed information/data, the same could be referred to Prof. V. K. Vijay to sort out the problems.

Regarding Technology for value addition of Garlic, the Group was apprised that Shri Rajiv Acharya, Project Officer, DST Rajasthan was contacted to get information about the technologies available on the problems identified in Bharatpur Meeting. He had informed that they are implementing a project on the technology for value addition of Garlic in a Krishi Vigyan Kendra in Udaipur district. He promised to send the details of the technology soon by e-mail which is awaited. Again the Core Group emphasized that more details may be collected about the status now whether the problem still persists, scale of production of garlic in the state, which particular area and what is exactly desired to be done.

Regarding Onion storage, Shri Rajiv Acharya had mentioned about the traditional technology of Onion storage in Bamboo structures in open space in Maharashtra. The same could be in Rajasthan, if found suitable. The Core Group once again repeated that more details may be collected about the status now whether the problem still persists, scale of production of Onion in the state, which particular area and what is exactly desired to be done.

In fact same will be applicable to other technologies like preparation of low cost animal feed; low cost & small scales Chilling Plant for Milk; and manufacturing of large scale fibre from Maize.

Regarding technology for drying of Chillies, Major Chatterjee had suggested to contact TIDE, Bangalore. The site of TIDE, Bangalore was searched where it was found that Cabinet Dryers can be used for small quantity and Room Dryers can be used for drying of large quantity of Chillies. The cabinet dryers can be constructed with bricks or by using metallic components. The combustion chamber and the ducting assembly are conveniently laid at the base of the room. Heat is generated by the combustion of biomass on a grate in the combustion chamber and facilitating the movement of hot gases through the duct pipes.

The Chairman once again emphasized that detailed information on these problems be collected from relevant sources so that solutions to these problems could be looked into.

B)  RuTAG activities in Punjab:

Prof. Rajendra Prasad, Coordinator RuTAG apprised the Group that he attended a meeting held on 10th March, 2011 at PTU Kapurthala under the Chairmanship of the Vice Chancellor, PTU.  The problems raised in the meeting were regarding use of straw (left over uncut in the fields after harvesting of crops). The possible solutions could be its use in Gasifiers, Pyrolysis and briquetting, mulching back in the fields to improve soil fertility. The Group felt it to be a serious problem worth looking into. Gasifiers have been developed in some research institutions which could be tried out. There may be issues like silica contents etc. in the raw materials which should be carefully studied. Other problems pointed out in the meeting at PTU were silt or salts deposited in solar water heaters and need for improved electric backup system; technology for water purification by removing heavy elements; Rain Water harvesting etc. The Core Group felt that rain water harvesting from roof-tops could be a good solution for water problems in Punjab and must be explored. Some NGOs at PTU meeting expressed the need of animal driven tractor and water pumps to be demonstrated in the foot hills of Himalayas where bullocks are still in use in agriculture. Prof. Rajendra Prasad further informed the Group that the Vice Chancellor of PTU had indicated willingness to provide funds for smaller projects. A team from RuTAG will visit Punjab shortly to look into these problems and explore the possibilities/feasibilities of available technological solutions in consultation with experts in various scientific institutions.

Major Chatterjee informed that one more Unit of RuTAG is going to be launched at IIT Ropar in Punjab on May 3-4, 2011 in which Technical Institutions, State Council of S&T, NGOs from Punjab, RuTAG units of IIT Madras, IIT Roorkee, IIT Kharagpur and IIT Delhi have also been invited to participate. He emphasized that RuTAG-IIT Delhi should participate in this meeting and make a presentation about the functioning of RuTAG-IIT Delhi. He indicated that this unit may take about six months really to take off and to function smoothly. By that time RuTAG-IIT Delhi may continue its activities in Punjab.

C)  RuTAG activities in Madhya Pradesh:

The Group was apprised that in the last meeting following two problems were raised by the RuTAG, IIT Delhi Team after visiting the Mahakaushal Region of Madhya Pradesh.:

  1. Up-gradation of the prevailing traditional technology of De-husking of smaller millets with traditional Okhli and Mooshal to reduce drudgery of the tribal women and up-gradation of the traditional Chakki made of mud being used by tribal women for grinding (Flour making) of smaller millets.
  2. Technology for mechanical processing of Aonla as there is no machine at present for removing seed of Aonla from the fruit, no machine for extracting juice from Aonla, no machine for Aonla shredding and no grinding machine.

The Chairman emphasized the need to take up these problems for technology solution under RuTAG.

Major Chatterjee had indicated in the last meeting that there may be some machines available for processing of Aonla in the field which need to be found out.

During the discussion suggestions were made by the members to contact HARC, TRIFED, CFTRI, HESCO, NOVOD Board to find out the details of technologies available, if any, for these problems.

The Chairman concluded that we should concentrate to collect possible information from relevant sources and find out solutions to address the problems.

Agenda item No. 3. : Status of Project Proposals submitted:

Prof. Rajendra Prasad informed the Group that the revised proposals along with responses to the comments of the Review Committees in respect of the Project on ‘Technology Standardization and Testing cum Training Facility for Ultra-micro (Pico) Hydel Power Package for Rural Applications’ and the Project on ‘Short Term Management Programme for Rural Enterprises’ have been sent to the Office of the PSA for their approval.

Major Chatterjee informed that the project proposals are under active consideration in the Office of the PSA and the sanction may be expected by the last week of May, 2011. He stated that projects may be started after receiving the sanction.

Agenda item No. 4. : Presentation regarding progress of the ongoing projects:

The progress of the project on Evaluation and Standardization of Animal Driven Water Pump was reviewed and it was decided that the field testing of the Animal Driven Water Pump be conducted at Kanpur. The field testing has been planned to be conducted in last week of April, 2011.

The progress of the project on Improvement of Bio-gas Conversion Kit was reviewed. The material and equipment have been procured and the testing and standardization is to be done. To complete the overall work of the project the PI has requested extension of the project period for three months within the already sanctioned budget. During this period improvement in the kit will be tested in actual conditions and if needed it will be further improved. The Group agreed to the request for three months extension of the duration of the project within sanctioned budget.

Regarding Final Report of the Project on Comparative Study of Bullock Driven Tractor, Prof. Rajendra Prasad informed the Group that the duration of the project had expired in January, 2011. The draft report was reviewed by the Chairman and the Coordinator of RuTAG and some improvements were suggested which are being incorporated in the Report.  The Chairman emphasized to complete the Report by the end of April, 2011 so that the Final Report could be sent to the Office of PSA soon.

Agenda item No. 5.  RuTAG Activities in the States of Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan  and  Punjab:

The Chairmen indicated that these have been already covered in Agenda item No. 2, however, he indicated that we should concentrate on the problems identified in Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan vigorously.

Agenda item No. 6.  Khadi and allied sector in Madhya Pradesh:

The Chairman requested Prof. Rajendra Prasad to follow up with Shri R. P. Tiwari the activities in Rural Textile sector particularly khadi being planned in Madhya Pradesh and define the role of RuTAG, IIT Delhi, if any.

The meeting ended with a vote of thanks to the Chair.

Prof. Rajendra Prasad
Coordinator/PI, RuTAG-IITD
Prof.R.R. Gaur
Chairman,Core Group, RuTAG-IITD