When the going gets tough...

Determined Lot

When the going gets tough...

The modern women are saddled on all sides. They not only have a family to take care of but have to put in extra effort at the workplace to prove their worth in a man’s world. Today, you find women in every conceivable job however easy or tough it may be. They have worked just as hard as men or even better. Metrolife handpicked a few women who’ve excelled in tough jobs and got them talking about it.


‘I have to work doubly hard’

Chitra R, executive engineer, Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Ltd, is perhaps the only female executive engineer with ‘Namma Metro’. She says her most thrilling moment on the job was when she saw the Metro train chug out for the very first time. “All the sleepless night and days and hours of hard work made sense when I saw the train roll out. As a woman, in a largely male-dominated job, I had to work doubly hard to prove my worth,” confesses Chitra. She observes, “The most challenging time was when Trinity Road had to be blocked when the Metro work was on. We had to convince the owners of commercial establishments that everything would return to normal. I can’t tell you the number of people I’ve had a fight with.” Chitra says she never ventures out into the Metro construction site without her safety gear. “I have to climb tall buildings and work in tough conditions but it’s great when you see the final product. Metro Rail is my contribution to the City I grew up in,” she adds.

‘Being soft doesn’t pay’

Forty nine-year-old Rosa Kutty, assistant sports officer and Olympic and Asian Games medal winner, is one of the few women working in a high post in the Southern Railways. “My job is recruitment and sometimes I train as well. I think my years of practice have strengthened my body and mind. They have given me the courage and confidence to handle any untoward situation while on the job,” says Rosa, who has also trained a good number of athletes. “As a woman, you have to wear a tough exterior.  Being soft doesn’t pay,” she avers.

‘I love big machines’

Prema is the only woman BMTC bus driver in the City and she drives between J P Nagar and Majestic. A native of Belgaum, Prema says that she always nursed a secret admiration for big machines. “I used to ride the bike, car and mini-trucks back home. I wrote the test for the post of BMTC driver and got through. It is a dream come true,” says Prema. “Big machines excite me. It’s tough and sometimes my hands and feet ache at the end of a long day but I have to make a living and driving is all I know,” she says. Prema says she faces no harassment or encounters no odd situations on the job. “On the contrary, people are kind and my fellow drivers let me pass through,” she laughs. Prema eats healthy food to keep her energy levels running high. “I love my job and enjoy every moment behind the wheel,” she says.

‘I am eager to learn’

Nasreen Banu, a contract cleaner at the Bangalore City Railway Station, sits on a heavy machine costing nothing less than Rs 14 lakh. Her task is to clean the platform and ensure that it is spick and span. “It’s tough to steer the machine and chances are that you will lose your control if you are not concentrating,” explains Nasreen, who is the first woman in the City station to learn how to handle the machine. “There is a certain tempo and speed that needs to be maintained when driving the machine. I was terribly nervous at first but I think it’s my eagerness to learn that prompted me to get on the machine,” she adds.

‘Tough dealing with people’

Anitha has been a security guard and a bouncer in most pubs across the City.
   She says, “My job involves frisking people and making sure they don’t carry any unwanted material inside the pub. Standing long hours and dealing with people’s attitude is the toughest,” she says.

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