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Nepal introduces ’women–only’ buses in Kathmandu

Kathmandu, January 5: Nepal has introduced “women–only” buses in capital Kathmandu in a bid to check crimes against women. On Sunday, four micro–buses which will ply on the Kalanki–Balkot route during office hours, were unveiled. Kathmandu witnesses frequent incidents of harassment of women in public vehicles. Data provided by the World Bank in 2011 showed that 26 percent of the females who frequently commute in public buses faced physical harassment.  These buses are expected to operate from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. and from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. After the winter season, the vehicles are expected to operate from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. as well. “This is a great initiative shown by the transport entrepreneurs to ensure ease for women commuters,” said Tulasi Sitaula, secretary at Nepal’s ministry of physical infrastructure and transport, who flagged off the bus service. The 17–seat bus will ferry women along an 18 km route and charge a maximum fare of 28 Nepalese rupees (INR Rs 17.52). Transport entrepreneurs said they planned to add more buses if the special service is successful in the prelimiry phase.  (IANS)

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