An inventor, activist, and entrepreneur, Siddharth Mandala is the person behind the discovery of the unique device to prevent rape. Despite failing for several times, he kept on trying until he achieved the success.
- By Riya Das
There is no dearth of such people on this planet who keeps on nagging instead of finding a solution. Hyderabad-based Siddharth Mandala, then a 17-year-old was definitely not among those. The only child of his parents, he was a quirky kid who later from his sixth standard developed an isolated nature. When most of the students of his age attended school every day, Siddharth would stay back home and go to school twice or thrice a week. Finding him being trapped in isolation, his mother would take him to parks and different places, that later helped him to express his opinions boldly.
Then it happened; on 16 December 2012, a girl named Nirbhaya was brutally raped by a gang of men in Delhi. Siddharth recalls, "My mother used to join the march for Nirbhaya Campaign for several weeks to support the victim and her family. I was curious as to how this protest goes on, and thus accompanied my mother to attend the same every weekend." This raised the question in his mind, which most of the time remained unanswered - In what ways and to what parameter, are these protests going to help stop this kind of incidents?
Decides Not be a Mere Spectator
Time passed by since the rape took place. The thought of creating something that will help to protect women grew in Siddharth’s mind. He gradually began to try implementing the concepts of physics that were taught in the classes. Siddharth shares, "I decided that instead of sitting and protesting, I need to find a way out for this prevalent issue." Eventually, he got more involved in using the most out of the various recourses present on the internet along with his friend, Abhishek. The next two years for Siddharth was completely a trial and error phase where his prototype failed for 17 times. "We were never tired of trying as it had become a hobby for us to dedicate few hours from our day to work on this prototype," adds Siddharth.
He got in touch with several mentors through various social media sites who provided their experience and knowledge to him. During this period, he taught himself programming in various languages. "The invention process was not plain sailing. While experimenting where I faced electrocution twice, on the other hand, Abhishek developed a nosebleed," mentions Siddharth. After these hardships, making a contribution to the safety of women, Siddharth developed an Electroshoe. "It is unique footwear that can electrocute the perpetrator instantly by inflicting 0.1 Ampere of electricity while sending an alert for assistance to cops and family members," explains Siddharth. All the wearer has to do is kick the perpetrator.
Taking a gap for his further projects, Siddharth completed his high-school education at FIITJEE. Followed by the invention, he received a letter of appreciations from the Education Minister and Deputy Chief Minister of Telangana. He was also invited to speak at the platforms like TEDx and Global Entrepreneurship Summit.
Post this invention, he went on to become an activist influenced by his mother. "I initiated an NGO called Cognizance Welfare Initiative (CWI) with the motive of teaching underprivileged students the basics of coding, different skills and so on," says Siddharth. Additionally, he also filled over 30 potholes in and around Hyderabad with the renowned social worker Gangadhar Tilak, popularly known as "pothole man". Today around 70 volunteers work along with Siddharth for the betterment of the society.
The reason behind the success that Siddharth achieved was equally because of his conviction and inclination towards practical learning. "I don't have any special talent and no different from any other boy of 18 years, it was just the smart use of physics concept. Every student should try to go beyond the classroom and start self-learning," mentions Siddharth. Making the right use of theory and practical, Siddharth at this young age is inspiring the youth to study differently that will definitely lead them to greater things.