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Women drivers in Odisha showing an increasing trend

Cuttack: More women in Odisha are taking up driving as the state has recorded an increase in their number. There has been a 33 percent increase in women drivers in the last five years in the state.

In 2017, around 25,086 women had driving licenses across the state which has increased to 33,666 in 2021.

While there has been a rise in the number of women taking to driving over the past few years, however, if we compare with other states, the number is not very encouraging, said Sanjay Biswal, Joint Commissioner Transport, Road Safety.

“We need to encourage more and more women to come forward and take up driving,” he said.

He further added, women gain confidence by learning to drive and are thus not dependent upon others for their daily commute.

To empower women and make them self-reliant, the transport Department of the state provides free professional driving training to women at Govt. Driving Training School (DTS), Bhubaneswar & HMV Driving Training Institute (DTI), Chhatia.

There is an increase in the number of women trainees in both institutes over the years. From 25 women trainees in 2016-17, DTS, Bhubaneswar now has 90 women taking lessons to drive commercial vehicles. 60 of them belong to Capital Region Urban Transport.

DTS, Bhubaneswar was started in the year 1973-74 to impart non-residential LMV Driving Training to rural youths of Odisha, free of cost (except DL fees & admission fees) to create job opportunities for the trainees trained through this Institute.

Similarly, the enrolment of women is steadily increasing at HMV DTI, Chhatia as well. “Around 60 women have been trained in the last three to four years. The institute provides livelihood and job placement support to trainee drivers. Some of them are placed with private and government agencies after completing the course. There are lady trainers also present in the institute who teach driving regularly along with soft skills,” informed Sadiq Hussain Syed, Principal, HMV DTI, Chhatia.

The institute provides 30 days of residential HMV driving training to the people of the state. It has been operational on 44 acres of land since 2013. A total of 16,727 students have passed out from this institute since its inception.

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