Indian jugaad, Water-fuelled car

If ISRO exemplified Indian jugaad with Mangalyaan, here is another stalwart you can add to the wall of fame. Mohammad Raees Markani – a car mechanic from Madhya Pradesh – has perhaps found a way to rescue the Indian public from the woes of ever rising fuel price by designing a working motor vehicle that runs on water.

Markani, 44, had been modifying an 800 cc engine for five years to reach what he believes is a scientific breakthrough.

The eco-friendly car uses a mix of water and carbides – a concoction that costs less than INR10 per litre.

The genius behind the invention says: “The car runs on acetylene gas , which is formed from a chemical reaction between calcium carbide and water. The gas is used for several industrial purposes including welding and portable lighting for miners. But in my case, I am using it to propel the car engines.

I have made other changes to the engines, which helps the overall performance of the car . So basically, it is just about the water.”

Markani has never attended school and has been a car mechanic for over 15 years. With his invention which has been hailed as a great leap in Indian society, he has become a local celebrity.

“This idea struck my mind while I was gas welding a part of my car in my workshop many years ago. But I did not know how to go about it,” Markani said.

“Somehow, I made a start and it took five years to make this efficient engine.”

With global warming no longer a joke, the market for environmental-friendly fuels and vehicles is becoming bigger and automobile companies are fervently looking for technology that can make their products less polluting. Needless to say, Markani’s car appears like a good option to them.

Markani now has a patent for his water car and has been invited by Chinese automobile companies to to develop the idea further.

All the companies that are interested in Raees’s water car project will have to meet his one condition – any plant to make new cars will be established only in his hometown in Madhya Pradesh.

Markani said: “I want things to change in my hometown. So this is where my work should continue.”

The only way to top this economic deal would be through bargaining with the fuel supplier. That achievement will warrant a different story.

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