| A woman constable at Bailey Road in Patna. Picture by Ranjeet Kumar Dey |
The traffic police department is planning to meet Patna Municipal Corporation (PMC) authorities to request the civic agency to provide portable toilets for women constables.
The women constables of the capital are exceedingly putting their health at risk owing to work pressure and lack of portable lavatories. There are no washrooms for the constables to relieve themselves during the time they slog it out on the streets for at least eight hours. The shift starts at 9am and continues till 5pm.
Patna traffic superintendent of police (SP) Chandrika Prasad said the issue needed to be taken up on a priority basis.
“It is a problem and we need to find a solution soon. We wanted the women constables to help co-ordinate the city traffic. There are at least five to six traffic posts in the heart of Patna where women constables manage the traffic. Apart from this, there are around 40 women constables deployed at different roads in the capital helping their male counterparts in regulating traffic. The need for washrooms is essential and genuine,” the SP said.
The officer added that the police were planning a detailed discussion with the PMC regarding the washrooms.
“We would request the PMC to arrange for portable washrooms at places where women constables are deployed. We have to see how many portable washrooms are available with the PMC. The plan has to be made accordingly,” Prasad said. Another traffic officer said the portable washrooms should to be placed at specific points, where the women officers can reach easily.
“There are certain areas like the road in front of Pant Bhavan, where women constables can easily visit the government building to relieve themselves. But there are vicinities that do not have government buildings. The Ashok Rajpath is one such area. Though there are some markets in the area, it is not advisable for women to visit the markets there to relieve. We need to find a solution where women can do their duties without thinking about such health hazards,” the officer said.
The women constables are happy that their seniors have given a thought to their everyday problem. “We cannot discuss the problem with everyone. If seniors are thinking about our trouble, it is commendable,” a constable said.