Women feel unsafe travelling to NCR

After Dusk

The minute the clock strikes 7, my mother calls me up to find out how far I am from the Botanical Garden Metro station,” says 23-year old Prakriti Singh for whom it has become a norm to attend to calls from her mother, once it gets dark.

“I must inform her few stations before I reach so that my brother or father can pick me up from the Metro station soon after I reach. I cannot afford to wait even a little longer at the Metro station,” she adds her voice betraying fear about the lack of security outside
the station.

With increasing number of autowallahs haggling to trap a passenger and insufficient security mechanisms in place outside Metro stations, women commuters understandably feel unsafe the moment they step out of safe confines of the Metro station.

While Prakriti’s mother heaves a sigh of relief at the arangement she has devised for her daughter’s safety, the same cannot be said about Ritika Pafett. Watchful and alert, Ritika, has to be on guard once she exits the Noida City Centre Metro station. “At times I cannot avoid my work and it does get late by the time I leave office.

Once my train reaches the last stop on the Blue line towards Noida, it is already 9.30-10pm and the scene outside the station is enough to make one shrink with fear. The road right outside the Metro station is deserted with just two or three autowallahs standing to fleece you,” describes the 26-year old professional who dreads reaching late.

In a recent news report, Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) identified around 700 vulnerable spots in and around Metro stations in an internal survey. Women commuters have been repeatedly reporting about lack of security outside Metro stations in Noida and Ghaziabad but to no avail.

The female commuters travelling to Gurgaon have similar concerns, but are still better off since the police officials have, “made the autowallahs stand in a queue a little away from the station exit. This has vacated the area outside the station and made it more peaceful as compared to what it was a month back,” praises Dheeru Sagar, a 24-year old who gets down at MG Road Metro station.

However she too is afraid to reach the station post-7 pm for “Police is not always present here. I try not to come later than 8 pm because I haven’t heard good things about the place in general. Few eve-teasing cases have been registered in the past and it is supposedly a result of this that the police has geared up a little,” she observes.

But is it necessary that only after a catastrophe strikes  that the authorities will take action? There was a lot of security in the Capital around December 16 this year, but once the date passed and the dense fog enveloped the Capital and NCR, things seem to have gone back to their routine self.

The worst hit areas were the NCR Metro stations where there was hardly any security to write home about. Considering that a lot of women commuters travel from the City to NCR, can the authorities lend an ear
to their concern?

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