Greenpeace India has written an open letter to Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah recommending making the Uchita Prayana Scheme (free public transport for women) more effective, efficient and inclusive.
Its recommendations are — make free buses for women more accessible, safe and effective; increase the number of BMTC buses to 14,000; and establish 11 bus lanes in Bengaluru.
“As promised by the manifesto prior to the elections and later by your newly-formed government, the implementation of the Uchita Prayana is a great step for the State, its public transport, and for the women of Karnataka, among others. Free public transport for women comes with several positive externalities that will reflect firmly on most walks of life from better female labour force participation in the economy to a safe and inclusive ecosystem for all,” stated the NGO.
Greenpeace India added that free transport for women has been a tried and tested solution in Punjab, Tamil Nadu and Delhi, wherein the monthly income, mobility and social opportunity for learning and networks of the beneficiaries significantly rose after the scheme was implemented.
“Without incorporating women’s safety, comfort, convenience, and affordability in urban transit, sustainable urban development will remain unattainable. Building a city for women is essentially building a city for all. We hope that your government will take these recommendations into serious consideration and set the cornerstone for building a feminist and equitable city for all,” the NGO added.
Greenpeace unfurled a 20-foot LED banner in front of the Vidhana Soudha in Bengaluru on May 28 reading ‘Bus for women, Bus for all’.