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| Last Updated:17/03/2020

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Delhi's ragpickers make bio-degradable 'pichkari'

NEW DELHI: A group of ragpickers in the national capital have made a bio-degradable "pichkari" or spray gun which is an ideal option for those who care for the environment. 

The ragpickers at NGOs Chetna and Save the Children have come up with a dry "pichkari" made from used cardboard cartons instead of the usual plastic. 

"All you have to do is place some 'gulal' inside the 'pichkari' and when the handle is pushed, a puff of coloured powder comes out," explained 11-year-old Manisha, one of the ragpickers, who designed the spray gun. 

"It is made from used cardboard and if you use organic 'gulal', you can have an environment friendly Holi celebration," added her friend Deepak, 13. 

The NGO said the cost-effective "pichkaris" were not for sale but interested Delhiites could contact the NGO and learn how to make those. 

The children who usually spend their days picking rags in the bustling market of south Delhi's Lajpat Nagar area came up with the design in one of their art and craft classes as part of an initiative started by the two NGOs with financial assistance from Aviva. The idea is to teach the children soft skills and rehabilitate them. 

"This effort shows the children on the streets are brilliant and just need an opportunity to showcase their talent," Sanjay Gupta, director of Chetna, said.

The Times of India (16-03-2014)