KOCHI: When it comes to learning about various government schemes and projects, the public has to depend upon either the newspaper or their ward and council members. Many times these schemes lapse or go unheard due to the apathy of the officials concerned. Taking into consideration the plight of the public, a group of youngsters developed a mobile application that provides the details of all the schemes under various departments.
“It is for the first time that such an app has been developed. It has all the relevant data. The application rightly named Thanal provides all information at just a click,” said Ashik Mohammed, team manager, Corporate360.
According to Ashik, Thanal collects information regarding user through just seven questions. “It categorises the user for the deserving welfare schemes, initiated by the Kerala government. Further, it provides the list of schemes the user is eligible for and gives details and processes of each one,” he said.
Birth of Thanal
At the annual startup conference held by the Kerala Startup Mission in 2017, the IT Secretary M Shivshankar had asked startups to come up with apps that would provide the public with civic solutions, said Ashik. “He mooted the idea of a welfare app to Varun Chandran, CEO of C360. Chandran then handpicked a few young B Tech graduates and set them on track,” he said.
Sanju Payankannur and Akhil Suresh, students of College of Engineering, Idukki, Amal Suresh, A Sanju and Shahid constituted the team.
“The seed fund of Rs one lakh for the app was provided by C360. The corporate also provided all the requisite data in an application format. We have tried to give life to our vision by utilising the technical expertise of the students,” said Ashik.
As the second phase, Thanal will be upgraded to include voice activation. “The aim is to help those who are unable to navigate the keys on a smartphone. The user has to only issue a command and the necessary item will pop up,” he added. Social workers, public servants, and government staff can also access welfare scheme data on their phone during meetings and advise the public directly.