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The Priyadarshani Taxi Service is an initiative implemented by Susieben Shah, through her role as an entrepreneur and social activist, in 2008. A women-oriented service, where taxis are driven by women trained in efficient driving, this active initiative has taken to empower women from economically backward classes, and the minorities from the weaker sectors of society. It provides an opportunity for success-hungry, forward-minded women, to stand equally with men.
Realizing the lack of women drivers in the city, she introduced this programme, where women who earn an income of less than Rs. 10,000 are trained and employed to drive taxis. She states that the service is ‘born in the gullies and chawls of Mumbai’, and as President of the Stri Shakti Kendra she is helping to ‘implement welfare schemes of the Government for the poor, old, and destitute men and women of Mumbai’. While visiting the chawls, Susieben says she ‘came across lots of young women, who had a twinkle in their eyes and the hunger to reach out and succeed. What they lacked was the opportunity and path/direction to realize their dreams’. She then took up this responsibility and enrolled women who wanted to enter the stereotypically ‘male-dominated profession of driving taxis in Mumbai’. These taxis are available for 24 hours a day, are GPS enabled, and has emerged as a safer and more suitable alternative for female customers. More importantly, they successfully empower women economically. As Susieben puts aptly, ‘if given economic strength, women can come up to par with men, and equally contribute towards the development of the society and city at large’.
To avail of the Priyadarshini Taxi Services, click here