Thiruvananthapuram Women Bus Drivers
Image Credit: The Hindu

Anila, Jisna, Sheena, and Sreekutty are challenging norms by aiming to become public bus drivers in Kerala. The diverse backgrounds of these four women have not deterred them from undergoing comprehensive training at Kerala State Road Transport Corporation’s Staff Training Centre in Thiruvananthapuram.

Their goal is to drive the SWIFT electric buses and contribute to a new fleet of 163 electric buses under the KSRTC. VP Sheela, KSRTC’s only current woman driver, is guiding them through their training.

Having licenses to drive heavy vehicles, Anila, Jisna, and Sheena come from families with vehicle ownership. Their determination to be independent and earn a living led them to learn to drive. Veteran driver and trainer Sanal Kumar is imparting essential skills, from vehicle mechanics to road rules and safety.

Moreover, the women are receiving martial arts training from the police to enhance personal safety. The KSRTC is also making efforts to improve facilities for women drivers, including adding restrooms and dormitories at bus stations.

The KSRTC officials aim to challenge the misconception that bus driving is not suitable for women. They believe even students can become part-time drivers. Thiruvananthapuram is set to become one of the first cities in Kerala to have 25% women drivers.

As their training progresses, these exceptional women are inspiring others around them. With August approaching, Anila, Jisna, Sheena, and Sreekutty are eager to make their mark on Thiruvananthapuram’s roads.
-Re-reported from the article originally published in The Hindu

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