As the scorching heat continues to swelter the national capital, one auto driver has devised a novel way to keep his vehicle cool in Delhi. To beat the heat, an auto driver named Mahnedra Kumar has planted shrubs and small plants atop his green and yellow autorickshaw.
48-year-old Kumar has over 20 varieties of shrubs, crops, and flowers, attracting commuters and passersby to click photos of his “moving garden”.
“Around two years ago I had this idea during the peak of the summer season. I thought if I can grow some plants on the roof, it will keep my auto cool and give relief from the heat to my passengers,” Kumar told AFP who has also installed two mini coolers and fans in the auto.
“It is now like a natural AC (air conditioner). My passengers are so happy after the ride that they don’t mind paying me an extra 10-20 bucks ($0.13-.26),” said Kumar.
He also told that he had the idea to do this two years ago, so he now has a mat on his car’s roof with a sack on it. He spread some soil and grass from the roadside on the sack. He collected seeds from friends and acquaintances, and they sprouted into plants within days.
“It does not require much effort at all. I just water the plants using a bottle twice a day,” he told AFP.
Kumar further added that he was doing his “own small bit” for the environment by planting lettuce, tomatoes, and millets on his autorickshaw.
North India is sweltering under heatwaves with temperatures reaching 46 degrees in several places. The temperatures in Delhi reached 45 degrees Celsius resulting in the highest maximum temperature in the last 12 years and the hottest April in the last 122 years.