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Lady Driver: Stories of Women Behind the Wheel

Lady Driver: Stories of Women Behind the Wheel

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In 2008, when the Azad Foundation, an NGO based in Delhi, began training  poor women to become drivers of commercial and private vehicles, most  people thought they were somewhat out of touch with reality. Poor, illiterate  women, many of them from violent homes, some of them single mothers,  others from families and communities which had never allowed women to  step out of the home – how could these women take the wheel, drive around  in unsafe cities, be confident and competent, earn money? At the time, there  was only one known woman auto driver in Delhi. When Azad turned to radio  cab companies to suggest they take in women drivers, there wasn’t much  interest. Today, more than 300 women drivers have received training from  Azad and are on the roads of several cities. Nine years after radio companies  turned Azad away, special services or women with women drivers are being  introduced within these same companies. In 2015, the Delhi Transport  Corporation got its first woman driver, and in 2016, the Delhi Commission  for Women recruited 25 women drivers to be part of their women’s helpline.  Clearly, things are changing.

Lady Driver maps the journeys of twelve women from poor, marginalized  communities who have transformed their lives by taking up the challenge  of becoming women drivers. Each story is unique; there’s no Cinderella effect  here. Reality does not change overnight. Instead, as the women featured  here painstakingly claim a relationship with the road, it translates into claims  for identity, for dignity, for a livelihood. Their stories are about beginnings,  but have no endings – there is still quite a way to drive. OR – there are many  kilometres to drive yet.


Additional Information

Additional Information

Page Count

188

Binding

Paperback

Rights

All rights available (except: Hindi language rights for South Asia)

Year of Publication

2017

ISBN 978-93-85932-20-5
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