Mumbai: People suffering from mental health issues face several struggles and the lurking danger of getting lost is one of them. Akshay Ridlan, a 24-year-old data engineer from Sion, has now come up with an ingenious solution for the grim problem. It's a pendant embedded with a QR code, which was recently launched by renowned Dr Swati Piramal.
Loaded with personal information like name, contact number of family members, address and blood type, the QR code gives pendant wearers the freedom to step out freely besides allaying the concerns of near and dear ones.
Titled 'Project Chetna', the tech-savvy initiative is aimed at helping elderly people with weak memory, patients suffering from dementia, schizophrenia and school children. One of the striking features of the oval-shaped pendant is that it's incredibly user-friendly. The customised QR code will immensely cut down the hassles involved in reuniting the aggrieved with their kin. A simple scan and the person's basic information is at the saviour's fingertips.
The incident of a friend's father, who was diagnosed with dementia, going missing was the inspiration behind devising the accessory, said Ridlan. Recalling other experiences, the techie said that his college professor's memory loss and the missing case of a 17-year-old autistic child gave him determination for developing the novel idea.
Rise in demand for tech savvy pendant
There is an increasing demand for the pendant, whose manufacturing cost is ₹250 apiece. Ridlan aspires to take his initiative on a national level, but lacks financial support. Appealing to the governments and NGOs to extend a helping hand, he said, “I have hired a team and distribute 100 pendants almost daily. Numerous NGOs are reaching out to me and I receive calls from every corner of the country, but I can't meet the demand.
Dr Amrin Mogar, President of the Universal Reach Foundation which has purchased 50 pendants, said, “If the government gets involved in the initiative, it would be even safer. The only concern is that information should not get leaked and misused.”
24-Yr-old Akshay Ridlan from Sion with mentally ill patients donning the pendant | FPJ