• Saturday, Mar 25, 2023
  • Last Update : 10:24 am

Making public transport safe for all

  • Published at 05:00 pm February 25th, 2020
female whistle rape harassment

Women have the right to feel safe wherever they happen to be sitting, and not just on special seats

When it comes to ensuring the safety of women on the road, Bangladesh still has a long way to go. This is not just an abstract matter of how safe women feel when out in public -- the hard statistics paint a dismal picture of just how much sexual violence takes place out there, every day. 

According to a recent report by Bangladesh Jatri Kalyan Samity, last year alone, 59 women were raped or subjected to some form of sexual abuse on public transportation. This number almost certainly downplays the true scope of the problem, because most women in this country do not report incidences of assault or harassment to the authorities.

The study reveals a disturbing reality where female passengers are frequently harassed, not only by bus drivers and helpers, but also by other passengers.

Such behaviour should not be tolerated in any civilized society, and we need to do a better job in laying down the law, and making it clear that sexual abusers and harassers will not be granted impunity, no matter who the victim.

But first, we need to catch the perpetrators, and the way to do that is by ramping up our surveillance. CCTV cameras on public transport would go a long way towards deterring such incidences, and all transportation staff should be required to wear clear, legible name tags to make it possible to identify them.

Reserved seats for women are only a partial solution; societal attitudes regarding what kind of conduct is acceptable need to change. After all, women have the right to feel safe wherever they happen to be sitting, and not just on special seats.

Right now, Bangladesh is involved with a number of ambitious infrastructural projects, but these initiatives will not amount to much if citizens cannot move about the city with a basic feeling of physical safety. Let us fix this problem as a priority. 

Facebook 50
blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail