Now Visually Impaired can do away with their traditional white cane (walking stick) and instead, choose to use a much lighter wearable ring-like device that could change the whole dynamics of using support. A new mobility device called Live Braille has entered the market which can help a blind person navigate his way by sending haptic feedback or vibrations through the sense of touch.
21 year old’s brainchild
The device, a brainchild of 21-year-old Abhinav Verma is a revolutionary product that can make the concept of white cane obsolete. The fully wearable device allows a person to swipe his hand in the air to know instantly about the surrounding environment. The device has two ultrasonic range finders that can detect the distance and speed of an object it is pointed towards. It can also detect whether the object is a wall, a book or a human being in the range of up to 3.5 meters. With at least ten different kinds of signals, the device can send through a combination of amplitude and intensity of vibrations.
Low cost and high on purpose
Verma claims this device to be 100-times better than any other such mobility device because it is lighter (30 grams) and has got a way better battery life. The Live Braille is available in two different versions one at $299 another at $700. However, in India, it can be procured from an NGO at a subsidized rate of Rs 6,999. Verma came up with the prototype at the age of 18 when he was in college and got it patented. The product that launched in March this year is already being sold across 16 different countries of the world. Some of the clients include the Royal National Institute of Blind People and American Federation for the Blind.
How many women can say that they do not fear stepping out at night, even with a companion or in their vehicles? The number is negligible. Not only during late hours but even in broad daylight women have a sense of fear in them – a fear of harassment or molestation and a fear of being stalked.
This happens despite us coming a long way since our first steps on this planet. We currently inhabit a world that is much more open to women’s participation in social, economic and political spheres. More women are breaking household shackles and taking the route of a corporate lifestyle. More women are stepping out of their houses to work, to drive cars and bikes, to go for a nice dinner with their other female friends.
However, a lot is yet to be achieved. Women are still in harm’s ways, especially on roads. It is no secret that there are more male drivers than their female counterparts? Is driving a car or riding a scooter something women cannot do? No. The reason for the low number is our society’s attitudes toward female drivers and women’s fear of harassment or being stalked on roads.
Even after 70 years of independence, Indian women are yet to enjoy real freedom on roads. Crime against women has doubled in the last decade.
To ensure their safety, women have taken the course of self-defence. What can be done when a woman riding a scooter is whistled at or followed back home? More often than not, they carry with themselves small items of safety like – swiss knives, pepper or chilli sprays. But what happens if they forget to keep the pepper spray in their bag? Or when a harasser comes, they have to waste time scavenging through their bag to find the small bottle buried deep inside? Self-defence techniques come in handy only when they are available at easy disposal.
To ensure the safety of women riders, CEAT has come up with an innovative idea. They have integrated the grip of their scooters with pepper spray holders. This way, the spray is always at disposal and when in need, a woman doesn’t need to search through her bag.
The idea has manifold advantages. One does not need to consciously remember to put the spray in one’s bag each time before stepping out of the house. A bottle of spray is always fitted to the scooter.
#CEATSafetyGrip campaign is a unique step toward women empowerment. Its success will definitely aid thousands of women riding alone on roads.