All public service vehicles in Bengaluru will have to be equipped with the global positioning system (GPS) and panic button from April 1. The move is aimed at ensuring better safety for women.

To ensure safety of women, the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways’ (MoRTH) will install ‘panic buttons’ in public transport for emergencies

“The Centre’s rule is aimed at enhancing the safety of the passengers. The RTO officials will start field verifications to inspect vehicles. Action will be taken against those who do not comply with the rule,” Transport commissioner B Dayananda said, Deccan Herald reported.

The rule applies to taxis, buses and school buses

The officials had earlier launched a GPS-enabled safety app for women, but it was observed that it was wan’t very effective.

Also read: Towards making the Capital safer for women: Panic buttons in Delhi buses

However, some people have raised questions about the new measures.

“Who will monitor or control the panic button? Does it alert the transport officials or police? We need a 24/7 support system to ensure that the devices are more than cosmetic appliances,” said Aravind Appaji, Managing Committee Member of All India Motor Congress, expressing the fact that not all taxi drivers and bus owners are aware of the rule.

“Owners of many vehicles were recently forced to install speed governors. Now, they have to invest between Rs 8,000 and Rs 10,000 for the security system. The transport companies can bear such cost, but individual owners will suffer,” he added.

Also read: New women’s safety app launched in Hyderabad works without internet

Radhakrishna Holla, president of Bengaluru Tourist Taxi Owners Association, claimed,”Many transporters do not know about the rule. There is no company which manufactures a security system integrating all the devices. Some owners have already installed GPS to their vehicles, they can’t spend on another device.”

The order’s implementation was delayed by a month. A pan-India implementation of the panic button in cellphones has also been proposed. Lets hope these safety measures will change things for the better.

READ:A safety app that works offline too!

Read More Stories By Ria Das

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