Millennium Post

Lack of pink autos adds to woes of Ggn women

GURUGRAM: The daily troubles faced by women commuters in Gurugram once again came to the fore, when a journalist working in a foreign news agency recently mentioned the harassment she was subjected to at the hands of auto drivers in the city. The incident occurred at MG Road Metro station, where it has become a norm for most auto drivers to continuously pester commuters to utilise their services.
Dealing with the aggression, indecency and indiscipline of these auto drivers has become a daily ordeal for women in the Millennium City.
To ensure comfortable travel for women in the city, the concept of 'Pink autos' was re-introduced in 2014, which would exclusively ferry women.
However, three years later, there seem to be almost no takers for the pink autos.
Blaming lack of profitability, most auto drivers refrain from driving pink autos.
This has resulted in the reduction of its fleet in the city.
Initially planned to be present at all major Metro stations, today pink autos can only be found at MG Road and HUDA City Centre Metro stations.
There have also been complaints that most auto drivers refuse to go the older parts of the city.
Moreover, some audacious pink auto drivers do not even hesitate to let in male passengers, even if a female traveller is already present in the auto.
"It has not been sustainable for me to carry on with the pink auto services. Over the years, the number of women travellers has reduced. Now, with the Rapid Metro services coming in, my business will further suffer," said Randeep, an auto driver in the city.
"Staring at the women passengers, rash driving, and use of expletives in front of women is also seen among pink auto drivers. It could have been a profitable concept in a city with major shortage of public transport.
"Yet, either deliberately or due to lack of common sense, this concept also failed. At the end of it, mindset of the drivers needs to be reformed," says Rashmi Rai, a resident who was forced to use her own vehicle after many unpleasant experiences with autos.
Not only autos, but numerous complaints are received against private buses and shared autos that shuttle in the city. Lack of effective public transportation forces commuters to rely on these services.
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