KOZHIKODE: If the work hours of a woman living in a city hostel extends past 6.30 pm, then they are doomed. Not a single hostel in the city is willing to accommodate women whose working hours stretch beyond 6.30 pm. This when city hostels accommodating working men seems to have no restriction on timings. In addition to these outdated regulations imposed, these working women are often not allowed to take a look of the rooms before moving in, forcing many to go for rented rooms with no guarantee on safe stay. "One month back, when I started visiting the hostels in the city, I was startled by the revelation that not one of them was even remotely satisfactory for a woman like me", said Anuradha Menon, a working woman who migrated to Kozhikode from Tamil Nadu. "Since I work for a bank, my work hours exceeds past 8 pm and not a single hostel was willing to accommodate me. For the time being I am residing in a rented house near Ashokapuram, but with no guarantee on security," she added.
At the same time Suja Jayan, professor at a private college in the city, had another incident to quote. "I recently went to the YWCA hostel in the city near English Church. I was happy with the surroundings and the premises and wanted to see the rooms before I checked in. But the warden was very rude and did not allow me to have a look at the rooms where I am supposed to live. Scanning the facilities before admission will not be allowed as it is against their regulation, she said. I seriously don't understand what the lady warden was trying to communicate about the regulation," said Suja. Talking to DC, one of the city hostel wardens said, "Unlike men, we need to be more conscious about the ladies, which is the reason why a time restriction has been kept for women in our hostel. We don't want to take any responsibility, as any issues will turn to be a bad remark for our hostel,” she added.
Kudumbashree ‘she stays’ offer no better choice
The Kudumbahsree had came up with the concept of She Stay two years back, which mainly aimed at ensuring safe stay for working women and the traveling women without any restriction. But as time went past, even the Kudumbashree hostels started working in tune with the other private hostels functioning in the city, by imposing the '6.30 pm' restriction on working women. Kudumbashree at present runs three hostels at various parts of the city under the banner of She Stay.
"Kudumbashree is planning to introduce more hostels in the city for the working women without any restriction, but the existing one's will be run in the same way as we have accommodated more college students to the hostels which calls for imposing of time restrictions", said Ramsy Ismail, Kudumbahsree corporation project officer. It should be noted that only 24 hostels has been registered in the District at Corporation and other municipality level. Several people have also started accommodating students and working people to their respective homes in large number, as paying guest but not offering enough facilities.