For many women in India who’ve had to endure the unhygienic state of public restrooms in the country, the pain of using one may still be fresh in their memory. But thanks to Sanfe, an innovative bio-friendly pee device invented by two IIT-Delhi students-turned entrepreneurs, women in the country will no longer have to worry before using a public toilet - be it in a metro, train or any other public space.
Entrepreneurs Harry Sehrawat and Archit Agarwal, both students of textile engineering at IIT-Delhi, developed Sanfe, a pee device that allows women to stand and pee. The ingenuity of the device lies in the fact that it eliminates the need for any physical contact with an unhygienic toilet seat and with it, the risk of infections.
Priced at just Rs 10 per device, Sanfe -- short for Sanitation for Female -- is the world’s cheapest environment-friendly pee device. It is compact and is designed in a way that women can easily carry it and dispose of it after use.
Harry and Archit invented the device after their visits to many public restrooms highlighted the extremely unhygienic conditions women experience in these toilets.
Their research showed that 71 percent of all public toilets are unclean and present health risks to women using them.
"Women, being more vulnerable to Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs) have to face serious risks in this regard. WHO states that one out of every two women suffers from UTIs. Because of unclean washrooms, women also tend to withhold from urinating or do so by semi-squatting. This can cause the formation of kidney stones and weaken bladder muscles," says Harry.
To resolve this issue, the duo designed the Sanfe pee device, which is made from bio-degradable paper. It has been tested on over 20,000 women in collaboration with AIIMs Delhi.
“Sanfe is especially designed for Indian women. We have given a thumb grip, so a woman can hold it with one hand and her dress with another and pee,” says Harry.
The pee device features flaps that prevent papercuts while using and is designed to be self-adjustable. “Moreover, it is menstrual-friendly, meaning that it can also accommodate any blood clots during menstruation cycle,” Harry adds.
Sanfe is today available on major ecommerce platforms such as Amazon and Flipkart as well as on select pharmacies such as Apollo Pharmacy.