Shahid-Ul-Islam Bhat — Turning Trash into Toys

Aspiring to be an engineer, a young teenager from Pulwama district’s Thokerpora village is transforming trash into attractive toys.

PULWAMA (J&K) — A talented young teenager from southern Kashmir’s Pulwama district is becoming popular for his artistic skills of turning waste materials into attractive toys. The 17-year-old boy, named Shahid-Ul-Islam Bhat from Thokerpora village of Pulwama, is being praised, especially on social media, for his special art.

The ambitious Shahid, however, wants to work on a model vehicle which does not pollute the environment. He also aspires to become an engineer.

Talking to Digpu News, Shahid said that he started making these toys when he was studying in Class 7th.

Shahid-Ul-Islam Bhat

Waste material is what Shahid-ul-Islam uses to display his skills

“I make these toys from trash material,” he said, adding that it took him about two-and-a-half months to make a single toy while referring to a toy Truck.

Shahid is using old plastic bottles, bottle caps, steel and wood to reuse them in making the toys to express his love for vehicles.

A Casper vehicle toy made by teenager Shahid-Ul-Islam

He says that by reusing the waste plastic bottles, we can not only save the environment but also produce new products in a way which is environment-friendly.

“The skill of using trash to make toys is improving by the grace of Almighty and in future, I will modify them by inserting motors and batteries so that they can run too,” he said.

‘Government support is needed’

A Class 11th student, Shahid has not learned this skill anywhere. He makes these toys in his free time while giving first priority to his studies and believes that he can make quality toys if he could buy equipment with some government support.

“I got an offer from an Army Major for Casper (Army vehicle) toy which I have made from the trash. The demand for new toys is increasing day by day and it is very appreciating,” says the young boy.

When asked about the support from his family, Shahid said, “My family members, including my father and mother, have been very supportive.”

“When I used to leave for school, my father used to give me Rs. 10 or 20 as farebut I used to go on foot to save the money for buying the materials like paint which I needed for decorating the toys,” he said.

He further said, “I shared videos of my toys on Facebook and YouTube, but no one came forward to support me. Now, I appeal the government to support me.”

Shortage of funds holds the teenager back

The teenager said that he gets orders for such toys, but due to shortage of funds, he is unable to fulfil them. “I need assistance to buy the required materials,” he adds.

On the other hand, his father Abdul Rashid Bhat also asked for financial help from the government authorities, to help him work on his ‘dream’ model vehicle.

Abdul Rashid, in a submissive voice, adds, “I am myself a labourer by profession and have my family to feed, so I fail to bear his material costs which he requires for turning trash into toys.”

“He used to go to school on foot for five kilometers and saved the fare money for purchasing things like paint for his toys. He should now be supported so that he can get the required materials,” he says.



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