In a remarkable triumph against adversity, Rani Kinnar, a transgender woman, has emerged as India’s inaugural five-star-rated cab driver for Uber, a global transportation company. Her journey towards this groundbreaking achievement was riddled with challenges, reflecting her indomitable spirit and determination.
Early in her career, Rani faced a significant setback when she worked as an auto-rickshaw driver, experiencing widespread reluctance from passengers. However, she refused to capitulate to societal prejudices, instead choosing a different path. In a pivotal decision in 2017, Rani volunteered as an ambulance driver during the holy Ratha Yatra festival in Puri.
Her introduction to the world of multinational cab driving came through an ex-Uber employee who recognized her potential. Encouraged by this opportunity, Rani courageously embarked on this new chapter in her life. Following a successful interview, she took the bold step of purchasing her own vehicle.
Rani’s journey resonates profoundly as she serves as an inspirational figure for her community, motivating others to seek self-reliance and dignity. She has become a symbol of empowerment for transgender individuals who aspire to earn their livelihoods independently.
Her impact extends beyond personal success, as her story has sparked a positive change in societal perceptions. Passengers, especially women, now feel safer with drivers like Rani during late-night travels, as they find solace in the professionalism and reliability she embodies.
Rani Kinnar’s remarkable journey from facing rejection as an auto-rickshaw driver to becoming India’s first five-star-rated cab driver is a testament to her resilience and unwavering spirit. Her story serves as a beacon of hope, breaking down stereotypes and offering a path to empowerment for the transgender community in Odisha and beyond.
Re-reported from the article originally published in The New Indian Express