Kaif Ali, a student of the Faculty of Architecture and Ekistics, Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI), has won the prestigious Commonwealth Secretary-General Innovation Award for Sustainable Development-2021.
Mr Ali is the only Indian amongst 15 awardees from 54 Commonwealth countries, the university said.
He has been awarded for his contribution towards solving problems related to COVID-19, climate change and refugee shelter crisis.
Winners of the award receive a trophy, 3,000 pounds (Rs 3,00,000 approx.) in prize money and the opportunity to scale up their innovations in collaboration with partners and mentors across the Commonwealth countries.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Kaif Ali designed a prefabricated sustainable shelter, SpaceEra, that can help reduce transmission of the virus and house refugees.
“Kaif has invented low-cost portable housing for COVID-19 quarantine and shelter from extreme weather conditions like earthquakes and flooding. His design has been recognised by the UN under the top 11 emerging innovation start-ups solving climate challenges,” Jamia Millia Islamia said in an official statement.
JMI Vice-Chancellor Prof Najma Akhtar congratulated Mr Ali for the achievement and said that the university is proud of him. “We expect that it will motivate other students of the university to work hard, think out of the box to get noticed and contribute to nation-building”, Prof Akhtar said.
“Winning the Commonwealth Innovation Award lifts my confidence to a greater level and motivates me to work even harder than yesterday and innovate unprecedented solutions to achieve a sustainable future. I pledge to become the voice of the youth transforming the Commonwealth and to Be the Change," Mr Ali said.