KOCHI: Chief Minister Oommen Chandy on Monday said that the UDF Government would make all efforts to implement the projects which were announced when the government came to power.
“There will be no new proposals, rather we will review and implement the projects we have already promised, in a time-bound manner. The Mission-676, named after the number of remaining effective days the government is having, will focus on this. The She Taxi project also was a part of this mission,” the Chief Minister said after inaugurating the She Taxi project here on Monday.“The She Taxi project, which has become a role model for many, has been a huge success in Thiruvananthapuram since it was launched last November. So far, the women who operate the taxi have been able to cover 1.5 lakh km, and generate an income of Rs 15 lakh,” he said.
The project, conceived and developed by Gender Park under the aegis of the Social Justice Department, is arguably the first-ever such government initiative in the country.
As many as 25 she taxis, owned and operated by women, have started operating in Thiruvananthapuram. In Kochi, ten She Taxis were introduced on Monday.
“We hope to launch a total of 25 She Taxis in Kochi also. These taxis will be available for service 24 X 7. Though initially the women drivers in Thiruvananthapuram had sought a time limit until 7 pm considering its success, the service has been extended to full time.
The project is a good source of income for the women. The vehicles have been made secure by incorporating computer applications meant for women’s safety into them. The cars are specially designed, with ‘catchy’ pictures and luxury features.
Maruti Suzuki India Ltd has entered into a partnership with Gender Park to provide the pink and whitecoloured taxis.
The contact number for the cabs, 8590000543, which is common for both Thiruvananthapuram and Kochi, is linked to Rain Concert Technologies functioning at Technopark. The services will be coordinated and monitored from this centre. Gender Park plans to introduce a total of 250 such taxis across the State.
Oommen Chandy said that the State Government would provide every support, such as tax exemption to the owners, for the success of the project .
Meanwhile, M K Muneer has sought the help of the Kochi Corporation to ensure that an exclusive stand is provided for the She Taxis in the city.
The woman drivers of the She Taxis launched in Kochi on Monday - Metty T J, Nisha M P, Prasanna P, Saritha Jeevaraj, Sugandhi Raj, Mary George, Siji K L and Shyby Joseph - received the keys from Public Works Minister V K Ebrahim Kunju. Excise Minister K Babu launched the She Taxi in-car value added service.
Hibi Eden MLA inaugurated the ‘She Taxi Club’, the latest addition to a slew of value-added services that provides priority booking facilities, special travel packages and other offers.
Mayor Tony Chammany honoured the She Taxi drivers, and Benny Behanan MLA honoured the project’s partners. P Rajeev MP released the She Taxi document by presenting it to former MP P V Abdul Wahab and Maruti Suzuki India Ltd operations head Ankur Sharma,
Gender Park special officer P T M Sunish, Cochin Corporation Councillor Sudha Dileepkumar, Ernakulam district panchayat president Adv Eldose P Kunnapalil, district panchayat vice-president Bindu George and Kerala State Women’s Development Co rpo r a t i o n (KSWDC) Chairperson P Kulsu were also present at the function.