This Kerala Woman Passionate About Driving Gives Free Bus Service

Ann has always had the ardent support of her family.

Chokita Paul
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Ann Mary Kochi
Ernakulam Law College student Ann Mary Ansalen is so passionate about driving that she has promised to drive a bus every Sunday for free over the congested Kakkanad-Perumbadappu road. 

Everywhere she goes and on every road, she travels, the 21-year-old is now shattering prejudices. Every Sunday, she drives the Hey Day bus along the congested Kakkanad-Perumbadappu road. “Other days, I drive the bus to its home every evening. Those days, the driver parks the bus at a nearby fuel station. After class, I take it to its owner’s house, who is my neighbour,” Ann said to The New Indian Express.

Ann Mary Kochi Bus Driver

It’s been around eight months since Ann has been cruising through this familiar route. She explains, “I still remember the first day I drove the bus. People were shocked and terrified seeing a woman driving. In the initial weeks, I was a novelty. And many were scared to see a woman driving. They thought an accident was sure to happen. However, now they are used to seeing me driving through this route every Sunday."

Ann also emphasised how originally it was unsettling for people to see a woman operating a large vehicle. “They used to chase and try to overtake my bus. It was very discomforting. Many of them also used to make bad and offensive comments.” The conductor and the other bus crew members, however, are now her acquaintances. She said, “After every shift, we also eat together. There is a bad impression about all bus drivers. There are both good and bad people in every field, the same is the case here.”

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Reportedly, Ann has always had the ardent support of her family. She was inspired by her neighbour, the bus' original driver. “He taught me to drive and control a bus and patiently let me practice. He is the one who gave me the opportunity to drive the bus. My grandmother Maryamma also encouraged me since childhood. She knew about my love for vehicles," she adds.

Ann Mary