Women demand more reserve seats in public transport


Pakistan celebrated the National Working Women Day on December 22 with the aim to honour working women and convey a message to the society that women’s role in nation building is impossible to ignore.
The objective of observing the day was to recognize the contributions made by working women in the social uplift of females and urging policy-makers to uphold their rights.
On this day working women demanded more reserve seats for them in public transport as it was a major challenge for them to find a seat, especially on the days when Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) stations were closed down and the number of public transport vehicles was scarce on the roads.
National Working Women Day was first observed December 22, 2010 in recognition of the struggle of working women to secure a dignified and respectful working environment for females. This day was also celebrated to acknowledge the economic and progressive contributions made by women for the country. In addition, the day also symbolised the struggle of working women to earn respect and appreciation at the workplace.
Talking to APP here on Saturday, a lawyer named Shahida Sukhera said every working class woman leaving her house for work had to travel by public transport to reach their destination, but they had to wait for hours at bus stops to get a seat because only two front seats were reserved for women commuters in public vans plying on different routes of the city. Now a large number of women were rendering services in almost every important professional field and the number of reserve seats should be revised accordingly, she added.
“Our nation is currently enjoying the benefits of women empowerment as women are producing much better results as compared to their male colleagues, but no one is ready to give them the basic facilities according to their needs,” remarked Aisha Khan, a doctor.
She said the plethora of problems being faced by women travelling in public transport included constant ogling from male passengers and derogating remarks by van/bus conductors.
Saima who works at an office at Blue Area said, “Conductors impose themselves on us and move the vans before we are properly seated, and if we ask them to wait till we are properly seated they shout at us in an insulting manner”. Another commuter Sofia said, “Women feel insecure and uncomfortable sitting in this way and therefore they usually pay double fare for sitting alone on the front seat of vans”.
Nadia Malik, a government employee said that women in overloaded public vans were particularly vulnerable because everyone wanted to pounce on them as if they were fair prey.
Islamabad Capital Territory Administration Women Programme Officer Seema Tauseef while sharing her views said there was a dire need to raise the number of reserve seats for women in public transport as travelling and shelter were the biggest challenge for working women now a days.
She said the idea of plying separate buses at specific routes including Secretariat and Blue Area should also facilitate women where majority of women employees travelled daily to discharge their professional duties.
Rahana Hashmi said that in the last few years, women had been contributing to the workforce as labourers in factories, agriculture sector, hospitals, academic institutions, and they also served on decision making posts in the capacity of human resource managers, police , directors, business executives, journalists, lawyers, and pilots in the public and private institutions. She said that a number of legislations were passed to protect women rights but these laws would be beneficial in the true sense when they were implemented properly in every nook and corner of the country.


  1. Pubic transport is the most important transportation system in every cities and metros. Public transportation is really very helpful and quite effective in terms of transit of people to different parts of the city or metro or even different parts of the country. By the help of public transit, people easily reaching to their destination in affordable expenses. Now a day, public transportation is available to each route of a city or metro.

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