Heads up! This is a totally girl power news, Pink taxis is set to hit the Pakistani streets, designed to combat harrassment against women.
The women-only taxi will able to serve all women in Pakistan’s commercial hub Karachi. The good news is that it also driven by women in an initiative to protect female customers from the sexual harassment they commonly face when traveling around the said city.
Starting March 23, Thursday, women will be able to call the cab service — called Pink Taxi — by phone, a mobile app, SMS or simply by hailing one on the street, said Ambreen Sheikh, who is launching the service with her husband Zahid Sheikh.
“Our pilots (drivers) wear a pink scarf and black coat as their uniform. They include housewives, young women and students,” Sheikh told the Thomson Reuters Foundation via phone.
According to a report of Karachi’s Urban Resource Center, found most female commuters experience some form of sexual harassment while using public transport, a number that really mirrors the ordeal of commuting stories of women in a city of 20 million people.
In an interview with Noor Jehan, a newly recruited Pink Taxi driver, first worked as a maid and then as a driver for her female employer.
Jehan even said there was a need for such a service as most women “think thrice” before getting in a vehicle driven by a man.
In Karachi even the whole Pakistan,
majority of women really do not participate in the workforce, with a lack of safe transportation one of the main obstacles, according to a study by the International Labour Organization (ILO).
Local official of Karachi like Syed Nasir Hussain Shah, minister for transport in Sindh province where Karachi is located, acknowledged that women faced hostility and harassment when using public transport.
“Having a mode of public transport catering to them alone can solve many of their transport issues,” he said through a Pakistani television.
Meanwhile, Sheikh said the Pink Taxi service would be extended to the cities of Lahore and Islamabad in the next three to four months, followed by other parts of the country.