On 7th July 19, it was another sizzler. I was waiting for myparcel at the Karan Nagar. Like many others, there was also this girl eatingBiryani and absorbed in some serious discussion with an old gentleman in herbrand new Santro. They were taken by aback when an auto rickshaw driver wasnegotiating the left turn and had a rear end collision with the vehicle. Onhearing the bang, she came out quickly and became furious to see the dent andother damages caused by him. She couldn't stop the tears of disappointment butwas courageous enough to deal with him seriously. Her sick father was too weakto respond this nonsense. The miscreant couldn't defend his irrelevant logic. Meanwhiletwo more drivers joined and tried to suppress the lady by their big mouths. Iintervened to reason out the mistake. I took the bull by the horns and at theend, he agreed to pay for the repairs. Had I not remained by her side, thedriver could have escaped easily .The women drivers are facing daily drivingtroubles, the reason being others cannot bear to see that they are daring todrive and as such leave no stone unturned to create all sorts of hurdles ontheir way.
It is a routine for the young bikers to perform wheelie andother dangerous stunts if the womendrivers try to ignore and bypass them. They are being restricted to the samelane and couldn't move ahead. Sometimes these stunners, out of sheer frustration,would chase them upto the work places. They trouble them without any fear andcan even put the drivers life at the high risk.
Ask any women driver who has to drive in the Budgamdistrict, where tipper drivers are moving at high speeds and show morearrogance and carelessness if they see any women driving on the route. Therehad been number of serious mishaps but the administration is still in deepslumber without initiating any safety measures and keeping them under theproper surveillance.
On account of any urgency, if the woman has to drive in theevening, they are being put at an unease due to the high beam driving from theopposite side and a risky situation is created, as the instant flashes causesthe vision blurredness and one cannot locate the objects properly.
Driving in the interiors of the city is not an easy taskduring the office hours. Few people are not so well mannered to show anycourtesy to the female drivers, as sometimes it is very difficult to drive sosafely in those narrow lanes and if any mistake happens , they will not comeforward to help but will simply laugh at, instead of boosting the confidence ofthe nervous ladies.
Tailgating is being done to make them nervous and put themin a risk to control the vehicle in time and in a haste don't know which sideto move and can result in serious accidents. Sometimes anyone of us can faceawkward situations like flat tyres and car break downs but there will be veryfew people who will stop and help the female drivers as a moral responsibility.
The public transport drivers feel a strange sense of defeat,if the female drivers try to accelerate ahead of them. They would murmurstrangely and sometimes pass indecent remarks. Load carrier (Jonga) hit and runaccidents are very common and the female driver's couldn't figure out what hasactually happened, till they gather the senses to see the heavy dents and don'tknow how to handle the situation, as no one comes forward to stop them andquestion their disgusting behavior .
Whatever I have written above, doesn't mean and should discouragethem to give up, Infact, let me give you few valid reasons " why womenshould drive and deserve our appreciations".
Molestation and groping in buses has become a routine affairand co passengers hardly stand up to speak against the animal behavior. I was not surprised to see few men alsotravelling in pink busses and no one can dare to kick them down. Our society isnot new to stalking. People frequently stop their vehicles to offer lifts tothe unknown women and trouble them unnecessarily but its really pleasant to seebold young girls driving scooties to attend the tuitions, be independent andmanage their tight schedules and keep the eve teasers at bay.It has given themwings to fly! In case of emergencies the female drivers can be handy to managethe critical situation and take the patient to the hospital. Not just that,they can also manage the family outings on their own.
The public transport doesn't ply too early and owing tomorning timings, women teachers cannot risk their jobs. Even the female medicosare duty bound to respect their time lines. Its also not feasible for thefemale travellers to carry their infants and children in over the crowdedbuses. Public transport is not the surest and convenient mode to be on time. Ittakes a lot of efforts and energy to reach the destination. Frequent hartalsand high auto fairs have left them with no choice but to avail their owntransport.
The female drivers are better than men because they don'tget involved in the road rage and always drive cautiously. And One is fullyassured that he is in safer hands.
Managing personal and professional life is an uphill task.More than a luxury, it's the necessity for the women folk to drive and makesthem feel strong, safe and empowered. Let's facilitate and respect theirefforts, augment their freedom, motivate them to be in the driving seat withoutany fear and appreciate their daring!