With crimes against women rising in the national capital, the Delhi government is looking to roll out schemes and features that are expected to ensure the city becomes much safer. The state government’s transport department is thinking about making it mandatory for autorickshaws to install panic buttons. This comes with an aim to make travelling by autorickshaws safer for women, says a Times of India report.
“The idea of having a panic button in autorickshaws is to make travelling in them safer, particularly for women commuters,” a transport department official was quoted as saying by TOI.
The panic button would be connected with the GPS device of an autorickshaw and the moment a passenger presses the panic button, an ‘SOS’ icon would flash on the GPS tracking screens at the department’s control room. Then, the control room would be able to find out the precise location of the autorickshaw. The official added that as they have the mobile numbers of all autorickshaw drivers in their records, they can warn them directly. The transport department officials said that it would be ensured that all the autorickshaws have GPS services functioning. “We would be reaching out to autorickshaw owners and drivers soon to make them aware that a functional GPS device is part of the permit conditions and they have to ensure that these operate properly,” he said. There are nearly 90,000 autorickshaws and about 40,000 taxis in the capital and all these vehicles are mandated to have functional GPS devices as part of permit conditions.
Meanwhile, the Transport department’s helpline will now track complaints from commuters in real time from an operations control room that has been set up at the department’s headquarters. The department has set up an operations control centre at its headquarters in north Delhi’s Civil Lines. Transport officials claim is the first of its kind in India. The helpline will now shift to this centre and all calls would be monitored in real-time.