New auto service in Surat: By the women, for the women

Surat: Surat Municipal Corporation (SMC) launched Pink Auto Service of women autorickshaw drivers to cater only to women passengers in the city.
SMC identified, trained and helped these women to get loans from banks to procure their own autorickshaws to earn a decent living.
“We have a batch of 70 women and 15 are ready to begin work. They have licence and we also helped them to get work from schools in the area. We have concentrated on girls schools and girl students for women drivers,” said Gayatri Jariwala, assistant commissioner, in-charge, urban community development department, SMC.
“They can easily pay their monthly installment to the bank and also save enough money. We everyday read about harassment of women commuters in different cities. This is why we thought of this service which not only provides employment to women but ensures safe travel for female passengers,” Jariwala said.
The civic body tied up with Bank of Baroda (BOB) for providing loans at 7 percent interest to women drivers to purchase their autorickshaws. The BoB sanctioned Rs. 84,000 loan per auto to each woman applicant with 25 per cent subsidy for the vehicle coming from central government scheme.
It is expected that these 15 women would be able to earn at least Rs 18,000 per month by ferrying schoolchildren and later passengers in the city. men of the batch would be ready to drive on roads in another two months. SMC plans to start a Pink Van Service in future. Chief minister Vijay Rupani inaugurated the Pink Auto Service at Dr. Shyama Prasad Community Hall, Aye Mata Chowk, Magob Dumbhal Road here on Sunday. The chief minister is expected to inaugurate projects worth Rs. 1,007 crore during the day in the city.

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