KARACHI: The Sindh government has decided to launch a training programme for female bus drivers, specifically for its flagship women-only pink buses.

A decision to this effect was taken by Sindh Information, Transport, and Mass Transit Minister Sharjeel Inam Memon during the 10th board meeting of the Sindh Mass Transit Authority (SMTA).

The meeting noted that the inclusion of female bus drivers would not only promote gender equality, but also ensure that women drivers operate pink buses exclusively for female passengers, enhancing the sense of safety and convenience during women’s travel.

Minister Memon emphasised that empowering women in all fields was the vision of PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari.

Another decision taken in the meeting was the consideration of providing subsidies for the Peoples Bus Service (PBS), following the approval given by the provincial cabinet.

The board discussed the feasibility studies for the second phase of the PBS, which includes the addition of 500 buses as well as the introduction of an environment-friendly electric taxi service.

The minister said that the implementation of the second phase of the PBS was expected to significantly reduce travel problems for the public, bringing relief and convenience to the public.

He also stated that the introduction of an environment-friendly electric taxi service would not only create a positive environmental impact but also generate new employment opportunities.

During the meeting, the progress of the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) Red Line project was also brought under consideration.

The meeting was informed that the Sindh government aimed to expedite the completion of Red Line to ensure that the public could soon benefit from this modern transportation system.

Mr Memon said the Sindh government’s determination to expedite the completion of Red Line reflected its dedication to improving public transportation and enhancing the quality of life for the citizens.

The meeting was attended by Transport Secretary Saleem Rajput, SMTA managing director Kamal Dayo, DIG-traffic Ahmed Nawaz Cheema, planning and others.

Published in Dawn, August 3rd, 2023

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