India’s first self-teaching Braille device called Annie, introduced by the Ranchi district administration to 24 students of Government Blind School in Harmu in July last year, has been nominated for the PM Excellence Award in the Public Administration for Innovation General category this year.
Deputy commissioner Rai Mahimapat Ray in New Delhi said, “After the presentation, a central team will be visiting Ranchi to understand the viability of the project. This will be followed by another presentation before the cabinet secretary. We are hopeful that this pioneering project from Ranchi makes the cut and becomes a model for the nation.”
Last year, 20 Annies, developed by Bangalore based start-up, Thinkerbell Labs, were introduced to promote learning in Braille. The device provides assistance in reading, writing and typing.
“Our initial goal was to promote Braille literacy through Annie. Since its introduction, we have developed several interactive games and activities that make learning much easier. The product has received great response in Ranchi and has also helped improve the learning levels of the blind children,” said Avinash Kothuri, project manager of Thinkerbell Labs.