"Reports of Social Interns with Palle Srujana" - June 2016

N Naveen, VNIT, Nagpur



Contact with Palle Srujana

To the National social entrepreneurship summit RENAISSANCE’16 organized in VNIT Nagpur, BRIGADIER POGULA GANESHAM (Retd) was invited to give a session regarding GRASS ROOT INNOVATIONS and allied activities. I Naveen Narayansetty of the same institute today feel very happy and lucky to have attended that session. Highly fascinated by his views and activities, I along with my friend Sumaja decided to spend few days of our vacation with Palle Srujana.


Palle Srujana

Palle Srujana is a voluntary organization working for the promotion of creativity at Grassroots level in the States of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. It pursues the mission of National Innovation Foundation –India (NIF-India) in the state of Andhra Pradesh as part of nationwide Honeybee network. PALLE SRUJANA scouts across the rural parts (knowledge hubs) of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana for knowledge and innovations and documents the knowledge acquired through scouting with sufficient recognition to the knowledge provider. The Grassroots innovations will be promoted and provided support for validation and re-engineering. Palle Srujana also helps the innovators to get their technologies patented and take them to national and international level of recognition. The rural knowledge is disseminated horizontally, from land to land and village to village through Shodha Yatra, magazines in local language, participating in various farmers’ meet etc. 

Palle Srujana being a Voluntary organization, entire activity is accomplished through pure volunteerism. It involves students, elders, women, private and public institutions and organizations, NGOs, and Government in the entire value chain of the grassroots innovations. The grassroots knowledge is linked to the formal system for validation, value addition, patenting, re-engineering, manufacturability, marketability and business incubation etc.


Objective of the Internship

To learn something new, improve myself, gain knowledge and also to serve the cause of the organization partially at least.


Schedule of the Internship

Here is the detailed schedule that has been followed during our internship at Palle Srujana.


  Schedule of work


  Start of internship :getting some experience for starting the IGNITE work on our own


  Completed segregation of around 350 ideas from different schools


  Had a break worked from home


  Translation of one innovation and discussions with Brigadier and continuing with IGNITE


  Continued IGNITE and had an interactive session with Mr.Kranthi


  Continuation of IGNITE work and also some valuable time spent with great innovator Mr Ch Mallesham


 A trip to ALERU to innovator Mallesham's home- got an opportunity to know about the traditional way of weaving POCHAMPALLI sarees and understanding the uniqueness of AASU machine.

19 Jun

  Visited another multitalented innovator Mr. Mallesh- a young and confident person always ready for challenges in Boduppal, Hyderabad.


  Continuation of IGNITE work and discussion of some social issues with Brigadier


  Visit to Muktapur along with Brigadier sir to see the machine innovated by Mr. Godasu Narsimha.


  Documentation of the innovation Pole Climber innovated by Mr.Pandurang.


Participated in 19th Chinna Shodha Yatra (V.N.Palle to Adavicherlapalle via Erramallepalle, Pochamreddypalle,  Basireddypalle)


Participated in 19th Chinna Shodha Yatra(Kommadi to Payasampalle via six other villages)


Participated in 19th Chinna Shodha Yatra(Keerthipalle to gangireddypalle via kothapalle ,ayyavaripalle)


Activities during Internship

The following are the activities we have done during our intern at Palle Srujana:


1.    Segregation of Ideas collected from school children for Dr.A.P.J.AbBDUL KALAM IGNITE Award

In memory of our missile man Dr.A.P.J.ABDUL KALAM and his love for students,a Nationwide contest named 'Dr.A.P.J.ABDUL KALAM IGNITE AWARDS' has been organized by NIF (NATIONAL INNOVATION FOUNDATION) every year to harness the creative minds of the children of our country. As a part of this contest, the students studying upto 12th or school dropouts upto to the age of 17 are asked to write down an idea creative enough to overcome any difficulty or is useful to the environment and society and not the least his /her family. The most innovative or creative ideas are selected and awarded. Palle Srujana  on behalf of NIF has been organizing IGNITE in both the Telugu states Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. It is held during the visit of “Science Express”  in  Telugu states. The volunteers of Palle Srujana give out the applications of IGNITE to the students visiting the science express on the platform itself and ask them to participate straight away after explaining to them about this contest. During the stay of the science express at a particular station volunteers of Palle Srujana outreach the nearby schools and conduct this competition.

As a part of my internship at Palle Srujana, I have been given the beautiful opportunity of going through the creative and innovative ideas of students belonging to different schools of different areas. During this process I have been through almost 1500 ideas and have met with few of the most beautiful and creative minds of our country. Though only few ideas have been shortlisted I came to know different perspectives, ideas, ideologies, reasoning abilities of children .I translated few ideas from the Telugu to English as the participants felt comfortable in Telugu. I learnt that there are no limits for imagination. This is first time where I have learnt that "NECESSITY IS THE CAUSE OF INNOVATION". I have learnt to judge and verify the reality of those ideas which also made me question about other possibilities of that idea and also why haven't I thought of that idea.

After reading these ideas I strongly felt the urge that there must more emphasis laid on writing skills and grammar in our schools and children must be encouraged to think creatively.


2.    Translation of an innovation from Telugu to English:

During our internship  at Palle Srujana we received a letter from a teacher in the nearby Z.P.H.S (Zilla Parishad High School) regarding an innovation made by their student. As the usage of pens and plastic has been substantially increasing in our day to day life they have been causing adverse effects on our environment .Therefore to reduce the usage of plastic one of the students from that school made a pen from the wood of a tree locally named as BILLANTHA whose wood is soft to work on and is cost effective. Inspired from him two other students also made a pen out flour and tree gums. The innovation was described clearly in the regional language which has been translated to English to be forwarded to NIF.


3.     Interaction with Innovators

Chintakindi Mallesham:

the innovator of LAXMI ASU MACHINE is the first innovator we have ever met. A five minute talk with him is enough to understand how determined and how disciplined a man should be to achieve success. It is his mother’s suffering which led him to the innovation. We have learnt that with great perseverance nothing is impossible .He never gave up on his thoughts and aims even when the whole world was against him. He did not rest for seven years till he fulfilled his dream. Though he stopped his education after his tenth it did not stop him from learning microprocessor and other related subjects. The inspiring fact here about him was that even though he neither has knowledge of English nor microprocessor he learnt the subject from a book in English with the help of a dictionary (English - Telugu).He is the live example of the proverb ”WHERE THERE IS A WILL THERE IS A WAY”. His innovation to reduce the struggle of his mother reduced the struggle of the whole community such is the power of his innovation. On being asked what would he do after the whole community is using his machine and there would not be any orders for his patented innovation he politely answered that his first aim is that every house inn the weavers community should be using his machine and next things next. This showed his will power in uplifting the weaver community.


Bommagani Mallesh is one of the youngest innovators we have met. Mallesh’s first and important innovation was the remote control for fans and lights. His mother was diagnosed with paralysis and she had stay alone in her house while Mallesh and his father were out to work. She had to sit in darkness until they returned home as she could not on the lights or fan herself. Mallesh could not see her struggle and wanted to help her out. It is again the necessity and the pain that led Mallesh to his beautiful innovation. Besides remote for fan and light he also innovated - Solar tricycle for handicapped, solar sprayer, Pedal pump, manual pump, solar fertilizer sprayer, automatic watering system, alcohol censor etc. These were his main innovations. When we’ve been to his workshop we were informed that he innovated or made something new every six months .He said that as if he did not do anything great till now such was his simplicity level. Then we asked him about the awards he won/received he read out a page full of them and we were shocked to see a person with so many awards and recognition to be so simple. He asked us to give him more ideas to innovate and we indeed gave him few ideas that were shortlisted from the IGNITE competition and he said that he would do it without any hesitation. He was so very confident and eager to do more innovations.


Godasu Narasimaha lives n Muktapur, Dist Nalgonda. Though we could not spend much time with this creative innovator, we got the chance to see his innovation in live and of course I have failed to record the innovation (a technical mistake).From this particular innovator I have learnt to be firm on my views and maintaining safety in any aspect is essential. I have also learnt that we have to think out all the possibilities and collateral while we are doing anything new or innovative.


I would like to thank Palle Srujana for providing me a wonderful platform to meet such great humble and noble people.


4.     Documentaton of an Innovation

As we were interested in documentation we have been given a chance to document the innovation POLE CLIMBER innovated by Mr Pandurang. Though we could not meet him personally, I had the chance of talking to him on the phone and gathering details about his innovation. The call has been recorded and documentation has been done solely on the basis of his knowledge and word. Through this activity I have learnt the importance of proper documentation and what minute details we tend to miss out when we are documenting a topic. The innovator has been patient with me throughout and answered all of my questions politely and even repeated few.


5.     19th Chinna Shodha Yatra

Inspired from Shodha Yatra conducted by SRISTI organisation, Palle Srujana paved the way to explore the knowledge of villages through CHINNA Shodha YatraS as a part of which volunteers of Palle Srujana visit the remote areas of the Telugu states once in every three months  and explore new methods of farming and search for grass root innovators and also to provide the knowledge gained through the previous yatras and grass root innovations to the rural communities by exhibiting few of innovations to gain their trust and belief.

As the last part of our internship, we participated in our very first yatra -19th Chinna Shodha yatra. Here are my impressions regarding the shodha yatra.

Being recently operated for a surgery just few weeks before the yatra, I was not sure if I could complete the yatra safely. On meeting one of our senior most volunteers Mr Kranthi, we came to know a brief of the yatra (most importantly a 50 km walk). But still I didn’t want to miss out this opportunity though I was not completely aware of the yatra and the perks of being a part of it.

Starting from the first moment of the journey each and every moment of the yatra has been a unique memory itself. And firstly I thank Brig Ganesham for providing us such a beautiful experience. This yatra is nothing less than an adventure for me. The following is what I have learnt, observed, gained and all positive aspects:

  1. The very first thing I have learnt from the yatra is nothing is too hard for an individual if he/she has the determination and willpower.
  2. All the luxuries we have in our urban life are nothing but practices to become lazier and softer and the three days stay in villages (my first ever stay in villages) has taught me that one can survive happily without luxuries and staying close to nature has always made a person better(healthier, wiser, happier)
  3. Every part of any village has engulfed adequate amount of knowledge which can be gained only when we are involved into the nature.
  4. I got to meet new people (both yatris and villagers), interact with them get to know their perspectives ideas and ideologies and also share my views and opinions with them was the important part and theme of the yatra.
  5. We have to respect our elders for all the knowledge and experience they have and they are nothing less to any library
  6. I have observed that the heart of the country i.e. the rural communities have often unattended and it is time to take some serious steps for their upliftment.  
  7. During the sessions we had during our yatra I came to know about problems I didn’t even know that existed and my view regarding these problems in general is along with searching for a solution for these problems people should be made aware of these problems i.e the problems must be publicized .
  8. I also had the time for introspection and I asked myself what can I do on my part in solving the problems. The following problems were put forward in the discussions and sessions.
  9. Milk preservative agents.
  10. Using excessive chemicals as pesticides and fertilizers in agriculture.
  11. Excessive knee and other joint pains.
  12. Tulasi - a herbal growth promoter marketing.
  13. Pochampalli sarees sales.
  14. Reducing weight of jacquard looms.
  15. Back pains in farmers while inserting seeds across the field.
  16. Marketing Sritailam.
  17. Herbal healing method validation.
  18. Problems caused by animals to farmers.
  19. Hyacinth.
  20. Palle Srujana magazine subscriptions in the entire state.

Though I cannot provide a solution to any of the above problems right now, I will try my entire best in contributing for the solution in the long run.

  1. As one of our yatris observed that there are no banks or ATMs in the villages there should be actions take with respect to it (opening bank accounts, having crop insurance etc)
  2. Even though I have no knowledge in farming and agriculture, the talks of Mr Vijay Kumar sir have fascinated me towards. I would like to try farming at least once in my lifetime.
  3. I have also learnt that there is caste system and probably untouchability is still in practice in few villages after talking to few villagers.
  4. From the stories of the innovators, I have realized the truth in the quotation ”YOUR ATTITUDE, NOT YOUR APTITUDE THAT DECIDES YOUR ALTITUDE”.
  5. I have also learnt how to respect people from the hospitality extended by the of the villagers to yatries.


In nutshell, I have earned memories, friends, inspirations, role models(Brigadier ) and last but not the least many questions.


And please forgive me for letting you down in the yatra and any other mistakes committed by me.



Though the internship has not completely met my expectations (I have expected that we could get a chance to work with the innovators on their innovations and also due to the lack of time we didn’t get the chance to), I have learnt to be humble. I have gained the confidence that I can survive and sustain myself with minimum resources which will help me to adjust in any kind of environment,  I will be working/living in.  And the problems faced by major part of the country that is villages are the eye openers for students like me and I shall never lose any opportunity to contribute for the betterment of our villages. And yes I have achieved the objectives of learning something new through this internship .


Eagerly looking forward for my next yatra,

Thanking you sir,                                
Yours faithfully,


Back to Sodh Yatra