“Trains overrun by female pickpockets” and “a Metro suffering losses like the Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC)” — the Delhi Metro Tuesday was abuzz with talk about the AAP government’s proposal, and many men appeared to be having none of it.
For them, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s announcement was “irrational”, and a rebate, they said, should be offered to senior citizens and the poor.
“It is obvious that Kejriwal has lost all sense of proportion after the Lok Sabha debacle. The proposal will only encourage women of a certain class to while away their time in AC Metro and indulge in picking pockets…,” said a Union Government official returning home in the evening.
Ajay Sharma (46), a chartered accountant, said that the move is a “cheap publicity stunt and won’t ensure any safety for women”. Sharma, who spends Rs 3,000 a month on public transport commute from Gurgaon to West Delhi, suggested “the freebie scheme will fail because the number of women who can’t afford the travel is minuscule”.
Ajay John, a student, said the proposal should have only elderly women under its ambit: “Young women who take the Metro daily and hardly spend Rs 30-35 a day don’t need this scheme.”
However, some male voices, like that of Ravinder Kumar (38), backed the move: “We are still coming to terms with the December 2012 gangrape. Such incidents will not take place if our public transport system is more welcoming towards women.”