PANAJI: Under the Nirbhaya scheme, the Kadamba Transport Corporation Ltd (KTCL) will acquire 50 buses to shuttle women to-and-from industrial estates and other workplaces. This is especially for those who work late at night.
“Every day there are reports in the newspapers about rape or violence against women. There is fear not only in the minds of women working late, but also in the minds of their family about whether they’ll reach home safely. Safety means, at any given time, any woman must be able to travel anywhere without any fear,” KTC general manager Sanjay Ghate said.
Launched under the Union ministry of women and child development, the scheme was started after the devastating Nirbhaya incident of 2012. The central government resolved to operate buses for working women especially those working late at night.
KTC is currently drafting a proposal requesting for 50 Nirbhaya buses to be operated in places where there is huge demand for women working at night. This will be a mix of shuttle as well as long buses.
“We will submit the proposal this month; we can expect to start the service by December if it gets approved by the union ministry,” Ghate said.
The buses will ply day and night; to drop as well as pick up lady passengers. The buses will follow a schedule wherein a series of trips will be on commute. Maximum trips will be carried out during peak hours besides late night.
The KTC already has a special ‘ladies only’ bus operating on the Ponda-Panaji route. The bus has however garnered poor response because most women of Ponda do not mind travelling in a regular bus.
KTC is however confident that the lady labour bus service will be successful unlike their erstwhile venture.
“There are many women working late at the various industrial estates in the state. They are usually dependent on public transport, however, unlike those buses, KTC will operate these buses wherever there is demand from such ladies.” Ghate said.