Kerala Police employs humanoid robot as sub-inspector for front desk management

By Vignesh Giridharan | Published on Feb 20 2019
Kerala Police employs humanoid robot as sub-inspector for front desk management
HIGHLIGHTS

In a manner of speaking, the KP-BOT is India’s first RoboCop.

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Highlights:

  • Kerala Police has employed a humanoid robot at its headquarters in Thiruvananthapuram
  • The robot is called KP-BOT
  • It's capable of guiding visitors to the right department, among other things

 

If you visit the Kerala Police headquarters in Thiruvananthapuram, the chances are you’ll be greeted by KP-BOT, the department’s newest recruit. What won’t slip your notice is that KP-BOT is a shiny white humanoid robot assistant in khaki accents, wearing a constable’s peaked cap. KP-BOT was inaugurated by Kerala’s Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan yesterday, says a tweet by the Kerala Police.

According to a press release sent out by the Kerala Police, KP-BOT is ranked sub-inspector (SI) and is tasked with receiving visitors and helping them get to the department they’re looking for. In addition, it can provide visitors with fresh identity cards and open new files based on their grievance. KP-BOT is also equipped to facilitate a video call with a superior officer, if authorised. Lastly, it is capable of recognising its superiors and greeting them with a salute. At the inauguration, KP-BOT displayed its salute when the Chief Minister approached it.

KP-BOT was developed by a Kochi-based startup called Asimov Robotics Pvt Ltd in collaboration with Cyberdome, a technological research and development wing of Kerala Police. The robot evidently sports womanly facial features, including a subtle black bindi on its forehead. “Women empowerment and gender equality were kept in mind while deciding on the gender of the first robot. Also, the fact that most front office jobs are managed by women was considered,” said Loknath Behra, the Director General of Police (DGP) in a statement to India Today.

Though the police department’s newest recruit appears to have limited responsibilities (and capabilities), KP-BOT is expected to be a regularly updated machine. It’s expected to be updated with facial recognition and bomb detection skills in the future. Kerala Police’s new humanoid robot assistant is similar to the one employed by domestic airline Vistara in Terminal 3 of the New Delhi airport. Like KP-BOT, Vistara’s RADA is designed to provide on-ground assistance to passengers with a Vistara ticket.

Cover image courtesy: Manoj Abraham IPS

 

Related Read: Vistara wants to open doors for robotics in aviation starting with made-in-India robot RADA

 

 

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