Chandi Technology launched on 14th August
While Pakistan’s Punjab was witnessing the launch of the “Azadi March” on the 14th of August, Karachi’s Expo Center was witness to a rare spectacle. At one of its ends Gul Bahao’s 20′ x 24′ Chandi Ghar with its stunning looks was shining brilliantly in the sun, while thousands of middle class Karachites were “marching
Case for Internationalizing Pakistans first Research Centre on Waste managment
The philosophy of Gul Bahao (literally meaning Flow flowers) is that there is a close nexus between environment and the economy.
While Pakistan’s Punjab was witnessing the launch of the “Azadi March” on the 14th of August, Karachi’s Expo Center was witness to a rare spectacle. At one of its ends Gul Bahao’s 20′ x 24′ Chandi Ghar with its stunning looks was shining brilliantly in the sun, while thousands of middle class Karachites were “marching up and down” to view the international exhibition organised by the Association of Builders and Developers ABAD at the Expo Center. Inside the Chandi Ghar, the workers of Gul Bahao including the organisation’s CEO were alternately holding up photographs and pointing to the items lying inside the prefabricated structure.
Amidst the sound and fury of the hundreds of people who kept coming in and out of the Chandi Ghar, the workers took pains to explain what the Chandi Technology is all about. Calling it “Karachi’s gift to the World” they compared it with the mobile telephone. The workers were telling the visitors “Just as the mobile phone has changed the lives of people (the world over)with its multifaceted tasks, so too the Chandi block is inter convertible into a water reservoir, a two story house and furniture. “You can see all this yourselves”, they said, pointing to the light weight blocks in the roof of the Chandi Ghar and then to the tinseled sofas which consisted of exactly the same kind of blocks as in the ceiling. Again they pointed to photographs of swimming pools consisting of exactly the same kind of blocks as in the walls. Other large sized pictures showed Chandi Ghars built in Thar, on the Super highway, Mansehra, right in the middle of Karachi, in Gulshan-e-Iqbal etc. It was claimed that 150 structures including large sized halls have been built all over the country.
While the visitors kept visiting the Chandi Ghar all day, strong winds were blowing. It even rained for a short time, yet the Chandi Ghar remained unaffected by it all. The steady stream of visitors kept encouraging the dedicated workers of Gul Bahao by enlisting their names for helping to promote the new technology as buyers and as participants of Gul Bahaos Rozgar La Mehdood (Opportunities unlimited) wherein the organisation plans to to train educated youth in its innovations.As night approached, the Chandi Ghar under the influence of the artificial lights began to take on a fairy tale look, drawing crowds of visitors, including a delegation of senior members of the Association of Builders and Developers. The delegation assured the Gul Bahao team of their full support.
Yesterday, the 13th of June was another milestone in Gul Bahao’s history when a meeting was held at the Islamic Chamber of Commerce and Industry to discuss the Chandi technology developed by Gul Bahao during the last 15 years or so. The meeting was attended by Gul Bahao’s Nargis Latif in addition to Mr. Kalusha Kingsley of the United Nations office for south cooperation and Mr. Idrees of the ICCI . The meeting was in fact the culmination of several weeks interaction on the internet. First of all a brief report was presented by Mr. Kingsley which along with photographs described salient features of the new technology. He said :
- Being plastic it is hygienic. ” it is mud houses that are the sources of infection . where there is no illness there is no poverty”, remarked the CEO of Gul Bahao.
- It is low cost. A 10×12 room costs as little as 15,000 and easy to put up.
- It is strong against the elements viz. wind storms, rains, termites etc.
- It is cool in summer and warm in winter. Here Nargis Latif interjected that it is this very quality that has adhered itself to the people of Thar where hundreds of people are anxiously waiting for it.
The CEO of Gul Bahao described the discovery of the Chandi Ghar as phenomenal and totally in sync with 21st century requirements. Addressing the U.N representative Nargis said that by supporting the Chandi technology the United Nations will be coming closer to its cherished Millennium development goals of making life easier for the common man.
Comparing the Chandi technology with the mobile technology, Nargis said that just as the mobile technology has changed the course of human life so too the Chandi block because of its prefabricated and modular nature will bring about another technological revolution. A two story Chandi Ghar can easily be converted into a water reservoir, furniture (including sofas, beds etc ) and vice versa. According to the Gul Bahao head, a significant aspect of the development of this technology has been crores of rupees invested in its research and extension. Looking back into the years 2000-2007, the aftermath of the 9,11 event has been a blot on mankind. At the same time, a lot of money poured into Karachi which became a huge laboratory for Gul Bahao’ s experiments, she remarked. Both the representatives of the ICCI and UNSCC offered to get investment from various sources for developing the Chandi Technology. In addition they agreed to promote it on various international fora in the middle east as well as in the U.S.A. They said videos and large sized photographs would be used in foreign exhibitions. In addition small real life replicas would also be put up in the exhibitions, they declared.
Yesterday, the CEO of Gul Bahao was invited as chief guest at Textile Institute of Pakistan (TIP). The occasion was the launching ceremony of a boat made from used pet bottles. Escorted by young female students of the institute, Nargis sat in the boat rowed by the girls. It was a delightful occasion for all those Karachites who had traveled from the heart of the city to witness the innovation.
The TIP is located at the edge of the city, near Ghaggar Phattak on 32 acres of land. It has been developed by a well known architect. Right in the middle of the lush greenery of the campus is a lake on which the boat was sailing. A good deal of mathematics must have gone into the “bottled boat” as even a strong wind failed to over turn it while the combined weight of the “passengers” did not sink it.
Then followed a number of speeches at an improvised public meeting place with the lake in the background. In her maiden speech, the student organizer of tip Ammna Shahzad revealed that she and a couple of like minded students were tired of seeing all kinds of garbage littering the idyllic campus. The main “culprits” she said were plastic pet bottles. Both the faculty and the students decided to do something about it. The result she said was the “bottled boat”.
Highly enthused by her boat trip on the campus lake, Nargis Latif reminded the audience consisting of faculty and students of the tip of the teenager James Watt who discovered the steam engine and hence ushered in the industrial revolution. She talked of the youthful Wright brothers who while trying to emulate birds trying to fly in the air ended up inventing the modern airplanes. She also spoke in detail how her urge to clean up the metropolis of Karachi landed her with 21st century concepts, innovations which “nobody in the world had ever imagined” she said and which are meant to make life cheaper and easier, she claimed.
Talking in a more serious vein, the Gul Bahao head pointed to the natural disasters afflicting Pakistan from time to time. She warned the well fed “burger class” that god forbid Karachi can “drown in a river of gutter water.” she reminded that not very long ago a 24 yr. Hour downpour resulted in high speed waves sweeping away peoples belongings in the shanty towns of the metropolis. This has also happened in the elite south she said. The cause cited was the clogging of the drainage system because of poor solid waste management for a metropolis of Karachi’s size she said research is indispensable for any proper solution of its waste management system.
In his presidential speech the head of the institute Mr. Zarar Zubair, agreed that the best way to acknowledge the student’s innovation is to market it.
In the end, amidst thunderous applause, Nargis was presented with a plaque by Mr. Zarrar Zubair. Later on as a token of honor a tree was planted in Nargis Latif’s name.