Archive for ‘public transport’

04/06/2019

Delhi metro: Will free public transport make women safer?

Indian commuters travel in the compartment reserved for women on the metro in New Delhi, India, on June 10, 2015Image copyright GETTY IMAGES
Image caption Mr Kejriwal has proposed free travel on buses and the city’s famed Delhi metro rail service

The chief minister of India’s capital Delhi created a minor sensation when he announced that women would no longer have to pay for public transport.

Arvind Kejriwal said that free rides on city buses and the metro would help improve women’s safety in the city.

Delhi reports some of the highest numbers of rape in India. The 2012 gang rape and murder of a student on a bus in the city sparked massive protests.

However not everyone is convinced that Mr Kejriwal’s proposal will help.

Dinesh Mohan, a transport expert with the Indian Institute of Technology in Delhi, told the BBC that making public transport free wouldn’t solve the problem.

“You need to think about the entire journey and not just the metro – you have to take into account how safe or unsafe sidewalks are and what the journey to the metro station is like in the first place. So if the idea is to make it safer for women, that experience has to be continuous. Safety can’t begin and end at the metro station. I don’t see any thought behind this initiative yet.”

The Delhi metro already reserves a coach exclusively for women on every train it runs.

On social media, the proposal caused a great deal of debate as well.

Many people, including economists and columnists, dismissed the idea and some women even said that they would continue to pay to ride the metro.

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However the proposal also had its share of defenders.

Despite Mr Kejriwal’s announcement, women will have to wait a while to see if it is actually implemented.

The proposal still has to be approved by the federal government because it is an equity partner along with the Delhi government in the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation.

But Mr Kejriwal has said that the federal government’s permission is not necessary as the Delhi government will bear the cost.

Delhi transport minister Kailash Gahlot said since this qualifies as a subsidy, they did not require any such permission.

Some have dismissed the entire thing as a pre-election gimmick by Mr Kejriwal – Delhi will hold state assembly elections next year.

The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation has not officially reacted to the news. But the Times of India newspaper quoted a “source” in the department as saying that implementing the proposal, if it came to pass, would be “difficult”.

Architect and urban planner Sonal Shah said on Twitter that a number of factors had to be taken into consideration for women’s safety to be addressed effectively. She said that transport access was “not equal for men and women”, adding that a number of existing issues with public transport had to be addressed first.

Source: The BBC

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30/04/2019

Chinese embassy in Paris warns tourists to beware the beautiful bandit … and other sneak thieves

  • Notice says holidaymaker found his wallet and mobile phone missing after being asked for directions by an attractive woman on the Champs-Élysées
  • Warnings come just days after Beijing withdraws invitation to join navy’s anniversary parade for French frigate that sailed through Taiwan Strait
Chinese tourists have been warned to be on their guard when visiting France. Photo: AFP
Chinese tourists have been warned to be on their guard when visiting France. Photo: AFP
Chinese visitors to Paris have been warned to be on the look out for a bewitching blonde who preys on the good nature and naivety of tourists to relieve them of their valuables.

According to a series of notices posted on the website of the Chinese embassy in the French capital, the alluring larcenist is just one of a number of con artists and crooks that prowl the city in search of easy targets.

Holidaymaker “Shen” became their latest victim earlier this month, the mission said.

“On April 1, a Chinese citizen surnamed Shen was appreciating the beautiful scenery at Avenue des Champs-Élysées, when a blonde approached him and asked for directions,” according to one of the notices posted on the site on Thursday.

The Arc de Triomphe stands at the western end of the Champs-Élysées, where a Chinese tourist identified only as “Shen” was allegedly robbed on April 1. Photo: Xinhua
The Arc de Triomphe stands at the western end of the Champs-Élysées, where a Chinese tourist identified only as “Shen” was allegedly robbed on April 1. Photo: Xinhua

“Although Shen was curious why the blonde would chose a foreigner like him for directions, he still replied as he had made some travel preparations.”

It was only after the woman had walked away that Shen realised his mobile phone and wallet were missing, it said.

Cherish the love: China and France should disrupting ties, Beijing says

Pickpockets and sneak thieves are a threat to all visitors to France, but the Chinese are often regarded as prime targets because of the belief they carry lots of cash and valuables, the embassy said.

As well as the Champs-Élysées, tourists were warned to take extra care when visiting attractions like the Palace of Versailles and Sacré-Coeur, and when travelling on the subway.

“Be aware of strangers in public places and on public transport, and always pay attention to your belongings,” the embassy said.

The notice about Shen did not say if he had reported the suspected theft to the local police.

Pickpockets and sneak thieves are a threat to all visitors to France, but the Chinese are often regarded as prime targets, the embassy said. Photo: AFP
Pickpockets and sneak thieves are a threat to all visitors to France, but the Chinese are often regarded as prime targets, the embassy said. Photo: AFP

According to the Paris Region Tourism Board, China accounts for the third largest number of visitors to France after the United States and Britain. Chinese tourists made 1.1 million trips to the country in 2017 and the figure is forecast to grow to 2 million by 2022.

While most experience trouble-free trips, there have been reports of Chinese visitors to France being robbed or even assaulted in recent years.

In November 2017, a group of 

tourists were attacked

in the car park of their hotel in the Val-de-Marne suburb of Paris after returning from a shopping trip. Their four assailants made off with nine bags filled with luxury goods.

A year earlier, 27 Chinese tourists were attacked by a group of six Frenchmen as they boarded a bus that was about to take them to the airport.
Source: SCMP
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