Don’t be surprised to see a ‘Women drivers only’ board in the parking zone of your neighbourhood malls. As a new step to ensure security for women in crime-ridden Delhi, some malls have introduced reserved parking zones for women drivers not accompanied by men. The separate enclosures, says the mall management, will make women feel safer when leaving the malls after dining at the restaurants late night.
“Special parking zones for women drivers in our mall makes them feel safe and comfortable. These areas have female security guards and there are no male drivers roaming about. They are also well-lit till the last restaurant in the mall shuts down,” says Raj Singh Gehlot of Ambience Mall, Vasant Kunj. The spokesperson for Saket’s Select CityWalk, which also has the facility, says, “We have around 50 special parking spots reserved on each floor, for women. These spots are closer to escalators and the floor’s lobby. We have trained female guards directing them to these zones.”
The step has got mixed reactions. “If I now get late catching up with friends, I’ll feel safe knowing I won’t be going to a deserted parking lot,” says Priyanka Sethi, 23. “The parking areas get so shady at night. This will help,” says Drishti Arora, 18. However, Bhawna Anand, 26, asks: “Why can’t they make common zones safer instead? Demarcating such an area would only tell everyone that we are driving alone. It’s risky.”