Budding grassroot innovator Kaif Ali, a student of Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI) from the Faculty of Architecture and Ekistics, has won the Commonwealth Secretary-General Innovation Award for Sustainable Development 2021.
Kaif Ali from Delhi is the only Indian to be selected along with 15 other awardees from 54 different Commonwealth countries. Each winner of the Commonwealth Award has received a trophy worth 3,000 pounds (Rs 3,00,000 approx.) and multiple opportunities with International acknowledgement to step up their innovations with partners across the globe.
He has bagged several International and National accolades for his contribution in sustainable development during the COVID-19 crisis around the world — including the Ubuntu Architecture scholarship to develop Safe Space for Africa and UN Climate Innovation Lab Award. Deeply concerned by the plight of his countrymen and the difficulties faced by the Syrian refugees, he had designed the Space Era project for low-cost portable housing units, safe quarantine spaces, clinics and hospitals through shipping containers.
The Vice-Chancellor of Jamia Millia Islamia, Prof. Najma Akhtar, congratulated the JMI student. “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,” she said.
The JMI Administration also mentioned in an official statement that “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,”
Kaif Ali said that the award motivates him to work harder than before and innovate unprecedented solutions to achieve a sustainable future.