18 November 2013

Indian hero Tendulkar to bat for solar

India's cricket hero Sachin Tendulkar, who retired from the game on Saturday, is to focus on providing solar powered lighting to remote communities in his home nation.The 'Little Master': from cricket to solar (Photo - www.bollywoodhungama.com)

In an interview with BBC radio broadcast this morning, in which he was described as "the most famous Indian alive", Tendulkar said he would like to do "something which is very dear to me … to light up the entire nation."

At present, he noted, millions of Indians have no electric lighting in their homes. Tendulkar's aim is to provide these people with an LED-based system that can operate on solar energy or mains power and provide 8-15 hours of indoor lighting.

The technology has been developed by Schneider Electric, with whom Tendulkar set up a non-profit called Spreading Happiness in April. More than 1,500 villagers in Velunje and Hedamba in Maharashtra state, are already benefitting from the system in a pilot project and the aim is to reach 25,000 by the end of this year.

Widely acknowledged as the best batsman of his generation, Tendulkar scored 34,357 runs in 664 international matches, during his 24-year career.

Graham Cooper