Hyderabad: Contrary to the general perception, some women are earning plaudits in a male-dominated profession. Today, a handful of women can be seen driving cabs while successfully wading through the city’s notorious traffic with expert navigation.
Typically, their vehicles are clean and tidy. "Many commuters have told me that my car is cleaner than most other cabs they've travelled in," laughed Lakshmi, a cab driver for the last eight years.
Her driving journey began with a van for school-going children. She had to bolster herself and improve her earnings after her husband succumbed to Covid in 2020.
"I bought a car through a loan. Most of my earnings go into repaying it," she said. Her working day begins at 10 am and goes on until 'really late in the night'. "I love it when women tell me they feel safe and can actually doze off when I'm driving," she smiled.
Lavanya. P, who often grumbled that her husband forced her to learn driving, is today indebted to him and his goading.
"There have been days when I would pick and drop IT professionals and some would worry if I could do well. I don't blame them either for they may have seen these silly videos of women ramming their scooters. But it feels nice now that such a mindset is broken," she said.
One of the many benefits of women cabbies, Lavanya said, is in not indulging in a road rage but either dealing with it calmly or driving away.
"But nothing matches the joy of making a woman or even parents feel secure when their children travel with us," she added. She now works in the test driving department of Tata Motors. To many commuters, these women are no less than celebrities or heroes, with their path-breaking daring and the comfort zone they provide....