The registration numbers of yellow taxis, app cabs and autos and the drivers’ phone numbers will now be written on the back of the drivers’ seats to help a woman — or for that matter any passenger — in trouble to report them to police.
Calcutta police launched their “Respect Women” campaign on Friday — International Women’s Day — by distributing stickers to taxis, app cabs and autos. The drivers have to write their phone numbers and the registration numbers of their vehicles on the stickers and paste them on the back of their seats, officers said.
The stickers also contain a message that encourages riders to dial 100 (the police emergency helpline) during an emergency.
Senior officers said the traffic guards and the police stations would distribute the stickers to all commercial vehicles.
Though the yellow taxis are required by law to write the registration numbers inside the vehicles, the majority of the cabbies do not do so.
“We have launched an effort to enforce the rule on the occasion of Women’s Day,” a police officer said.
Harassment of women by taxi drivers is not uncommon in Calcutta. More vulnerable are those who return home from work late.
In case of app cabs, the rider gets to know the car and driver details from the app. “However, when someone makes a distress call from her phone, it is difficult for her to check her phone and convey the details to the police. The rider will be able to better communicate with the police if the numbers are written on the back of the driver’s seat,” an officer at Lalbazar said.
Another set of stickers — with the words “Respect Women” written on them — is being distributed to taxis, app cabs and autos. Those have to be pasted on the windscreens.
A section of the police, however, feels maintaining data of all the drivers would be a challenge because they work in shifts.
“Suppose the number of the driver who remains at the wheel during the day is displayed in the car. Of what use will it be if the driver in the night shift creates any problem?” an officer wondered. See Page 12 SAFETY LABEL Information stickers will help reduce the reaction time for cops in case of a distress call The information will help track movement of the vehicle.
Source: Telegraph India