Odisha to deploy Vehicle Tracking System for Safety of Women Commuters

The Odisha government has hired the services of a consulting firm to develop a vehicle location tracking system in public transport facilities across the state, for the safety of women commuters. The Centre’s Nirbhaya fund actively promotes and urges states to install safety measures in such arterial transport system by installing vehicular tracking systems and emergency buttons.

Under the scheme, passenger buses, mini-buses, school buses and cabs operating under Uber, Ola and the likes will have to be mandatorily equipped with such VLT gadgets. When passengers press the emergency button provided next to their seats, it will trigger an internal system that immediately would alert a monitoring team with the location of the vehicle. The team will then forward it to the police, and the passenger can thereby expect a prompt response in a distress situation.

Official sources have said that the Centre and the State will bear the costs in a sixty-forty manner. The project is likely to cost Rs 15 crore, out of which the Centre is expected to grant Rs 9 crores.

State commerce and transport secretary Madhu Sudan Padhi said that the Odisha government has so far received around Rs 4 crores from the Centre under the Nirbhaya framework, and expects another dispatch soon. State transport commissioner Sanjeeb Panda said a tender would soon be floated for the project. “We are waiting for the technical report from the consultancy firm. Once we get the report from the consultant, we will float the tender for selection of an agency, which would supply the VLT device,” Panda said.

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