Pakistan gets first women-only auto-rickshaw to beat harrassment
LAHORE – Zar Aslam, an environmentalist has launched a service exclusively for women passengers and drivers in her home city.
With just the one rickshaw on the road so far, Zar, who is also the president of a non-profit organization (NGO) Environment Protection Fund, said she once narrowly escaped kidnapping by a rickshaw driver when she was a student, which triggered the idea of launching her “Pink Rickshaw” service.
“This is another step towards women’s financial and professional empowerment,” Zar said at her home, showing off her first rickshaw. “I and my co-workers face harassment by male auto drivers or by passersby while waiting for public transport.”
The “rickshaws” are covered three-wheel motorcycles and Zar bought one to start with, added fans, doors and headlights and painted it pink and white. The plan is to have at least 25 up and running by the end of the year, with the looking out for sponsors.
“We will lease out the autos to deserving females on easy installment,” Zar said. “We will teach them driving and will also help them get the driving license.” – Reuters