Govt. decides to amend Tamil Nadu Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989
In the wake of multiple incidents, where women passengers were verbally or sexually harassed by bus conductors, the government has decided to amend the Tamil Nadu Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989, specifying that conductors cannot ask any inappropriate questions about the intention of travel of a woman passenger or a girl or touch them.
The conductor cannot make any physical contact, sexual remarks or jokes with women or girls, a notification of the draft amendments to the Motor Vehicles Rules, made earlier this week by the Home Department, said. The draft amendment said the conductor cannot “touch any woman passenger or girl on the pretext that he is assisting her to get into or get down from the vehicle”.
The conductor cannot behave in a way causing annoyance to any passengers, specifically women and girls.
The draft rules also provide for enabling conductors to (after reasonable caution) either deboard male passengers or hand them over to any police station if they attempted or made any obscene act causing annoyance to female passengers.
Earlier, the rules said conductors shall not ask any person, who has paid the legal fare, to alight from the vehicle before the conclusion of the journey.
The obscene acts that could attract action include staring, leering, whistling, winking, making sexually offensive gestures or singing songs, uttering words, taking photos or videos causing annoyance to female passengers.
Conductors must maintain a complaint book with serially numbered pages to be provided to any passenger for recording feedback. This book shall be produced on demand to police officers or Transport Department officials.
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