Tag Archives: Cabs in India

Is it safe for women to take cabs in India?

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I keep reading more on this topic. Apparently, I am not the only one concerned with women’s safety. They are not concerned with my safety though — but, that’s another issue.

A fleet of pink cabs!
A new cab service in India has opened with pink cabs that are designated for women. I thought of a similar idea years ago that was for pink rickshaws. The vehicles would be driven by women, and the stops would have security, and the vehicles would be pink in my idea too. I thought of this first by the way!


Pepper spray & panic buttons
This cab company with the pink fleet offers pepper spray and panic buttons. One woman in India was raped by an Uber driver recently, and this is a huge reason why women need to take precautions. But, over the last few decades in India, women have not been safe, and taking more precautions seems like the best step to take.

Taking a photo of the cab
I read another article where a woman says that you should not get into a vehicle unless you take a photo of it with your mobile phone and perhaps send it to someone for safe keeping. Once in a while, drivers will take you to an undisclosed location and rob you. It doesn’t happen that often, but women, and foreigners need to be vigilant.

Registered cabs from airports are safer
As a foreigner, I don’t know which cabs to take in India. I normally take rickshaws and deal with their tricks and bad manners. I have a few tricks too which they don’t like which include getting out of the rickshaw when they try to bill me for a 20 minute stop at a gas station. But, airports normally offer the possibility of getting in a registered cab, and you can inform your friends or family what the cab number is just in case.

Martial arts are a good idea!
Indian women are not known for their acumen at violent sports. Neither are the guys for that matter. But, ladies who I know in India are routinely harrassed in parks, and by rickshaw drivers. It is a serious problem. In addition to pepper spray, women need to know how to defend themselves from a headlock, grabbing, or an oncoming bully. If enough women know how to defend themselves, the bullies will be afraid of everyone! Having a good command of Karate or Tai Quan Do is an excellent idea. Long ago I heard a story of a short Chinese lady who was attacked by three huge thugs in New York City. After about 2 seconds, the thugs lay lifeless on the ground. This tiny lady took them all out in the blink of an eye because she was a deadly martial arts master. In addition to Veena & Tabla lessons, some Kung Fu might not be a bad idea.

Plain clothes protectors
Conditions are so bad for ladies in India that they need separate cars on trains, and separate cabs, just to avoid being molested. Additionally, the government doesn’t provide clean places for ladies to go to the bathroom in public which is a huge problem. But, what if there were unmarked guards who roam around parks, railway stations, and roads to protect women from harrassment and other dangers. So many men go around India bothering women, that after a few months, these guards could arrest tens of thousands of these troublemaking rowdy gundas!

It is not safe for women to take cabs in India, or even go for a walk in the park, or down the street. However, women need to go to work, go shopping and get around. So, taking the right precautions makes sense. And I wish you luck. Just remember — use your newly found Karate skills on the bad guys, not on me!

Is it safe for women to take a cab in India?

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It is safe taking a cab in India if you are a woman?

Many feel that taking a cab in India is not safe for anyone, but conditions for women in India leave a lot of room for improvement. The first thing to remember about transportation in India is that there are many modes, and each mode has its own hazards. Just crossing the street in India involves risking your life! Taking the bus means being crammed against other humans. There is always a risk on a train of being a victim of terrorists. Taking a rick-shaw means that you are getting into a vehicle that won’t last in an accident, and only God knows who the driver is.

Many middle class women in India take cabs instead of rick-shaws. Cabs work for a centralized office who dispatches their call. The cab driver can’t get away with price gauging or sexual harrassment since the main office will fire him if there is an issue. Just a note that if you get a cab at an airport, make sure you confirm that it is really registered with a reputable company so you don’t get kidnapped or robbed. But, rick-shaws don’t offer the safety of registered cabs. I had a female friend who generally took cabs. But, one night she was in a hurry took a rick-shaw. The rick-shaw guy liked her and followed her home. Thankfully her family was home and told him to go away.

In India, women can’t go to parks alone because they will be followed sooner or later. They are not safe taking a rick-shaw. They can’t take the bus without being inadvertently touched by men. India is a prison for women in many ways. Additionally, on the road, there are no safe places for women to visit the restroom which is another huge issue. And if there are restrooms, they are so filthy, that no woman would want to set foot in them.

The irony is that Hinduism is the religion that supposedly respects women. Islam has a reputation of oppressing women — yet, there is no safer place for a woman to be than in Saudi Arabia. If anyone harasses you or molests you they will be sent to jail! In India if a policeman witnesses a woman being harassed, they will generally not punish the victimizer much if at all. I’m not from India, and have only visited, but based on what I call “word on the street,” the government really needs to think of ways to protect women in India!

Think Pink!
I suggest a new rick-shaw system for women, and by women called Pink Rick! It would be a network of rick-shaw stops around major metros. The rick-shaws would be pink. There would be security at night at rick-shaw stops. They could have share ricks going to other nearby stops as well to economize and cut down on traffic. I also suggest that rick-shaws have safety mechanisms inside. If you get hit by a truck you will die in one of those. Perhaps some padding or airbags (or anything soft) would help.

Women only buses
In India, train compartments are by use and by gender. There is one car for those with huge bundles, others for mail, women have their own cars so they don’t get groped, and then there is a men’s compartment which women are allowed in but don’t go into unless they are with someone. Why not have women only buses? That would solve a problem for women. Maybe mini-buses, so that they could come more frequently. I also recommend that these buses should be pink. My final note is that buses are not washed much in India. I think they get a wash every three years whether they need it or not. But, to emphasize the pink color, perhaps a wash every few days would be in order. Women like cleanliness after all. Having clean and clearly demarcated bus stops would be nice too.

Restrooms for women on the road
If you are a woman on the road, it is often not safe to use a restroom in someone’s home. You don’t know what could happen to you, especially in North India. It would be safer to have clean, state-run restrooms on the road with soap, proper lighting, and last but not least — toilet paper. When I say that it should have toilet paper, I don’t mean that sometimes it should have toilet paper until it gets stolen or runs out and then you wait two weeks to replace it if the manager is available. I mean you should always have it, and the roll should be padlocked to the wall so it doesn’t wander off!