Kochi: The Kerala Women’s Commission has sought a report from the Kochi Metro Rail Limited (KMRL) on the basis of a complaint that there was no seat reservation for women in metro trains even as other metro systems like the Delhi Metro have it. Chairperson M. C. Josephine said the KMRL Managing Director was asked to file the report in 15 days following which the Commission would take its stand on the issue. “We are studying whether there is actually a need to provide 33.33 per cent seat reservation for women. The report has been sought as part of this,” Josephine said.
The matter would be taken up for discussion in the next meeting of the commission as the quota is being provided by leading metros like the DMRC, said Lissy Jose, Member. When contacted, a senior KMRL official said the issue was discussed earlier and a deliberate decision was taken not to provide the reservation. “We don’t want to discriminate between genders in the new mode of transport. There should be a change in our vision and the Metro initiated it,” the official said. However, seats are reserved for men and women travelling with toddlers, pregnant women, elders and physically handicapped.
“This will be our stance in the report to be given to the Women’s Commission,” the metro official said. Earlier on August 12, Kochi native lodged Ebenser C L lodged a complaint with the Women’s Commission arguing that all other public transport including the Delhi Metro trains had seats reserved for women. “The provision of the quota will attract more lady passengers besides addressing safety concerns. It’s a Constitutional obligation and hence should be implemented,” Ebenser said in his complaint.