Majestic area still a male bastion; Malleshwaram a safe haven

"People like you and I can walk into restaurant when we need to use a toilet but not everyone can confidently do that," said Aiden Grew, one of the participants in pEtE maatu festival last weekend at NGMA. Aiden is from Canada but has lived in Bangalore for nearly decade. His statement was in response to Just Femme’s question "Where are the public toilets in Bangalore?"

Participants at the pEtE maatu festival marking their favourite spot in Bangalore. Pic: Padmalatha Ravi.

As part of the festival, Just Femme had put up a map of Bangalore city and asked people questions regarding toilets, safety and safe hang outs for women. The map was kept outside the audiorium where Citizen Matters and Just Femme held the panel discussion on "Making Bengaluruwomen friendly."

On the first day the participants marked where the toilets are available, accessible. While availability was an issue, accessibility and cleanliness was considered to be a bigger problem. When none of the participants could recollect where the public toilets on M G road were, Aiden pointed out that he had always used washrooms in the restaurants in the area.

On the second day, the question was  "Where do you feel safe in Bangalore?"  Majestic  area turned out to be the most unsafe, closely followed by Shivajinagar and Cubbon park. Areas like M G Road, Koramangala and Malleshwaram scored brownie points for being relatively safe.

These areas were the favourite on the third day too when the question was "Where do you hang out with your women friends?" Whereas city central areas like Majestic and cantonment were flagged red.

When Citizen Matters asked what the police were doing about such safety issues, Additional Commissioner of Police (Law and Order) Suneel Kumar (IPS) said that crowded areas tend to get a little unsafe for women "but we do have police patrolling in these areas and people should come to us for help."

Malleshwaram though, scored high on all three days – be it accessible toilets, hang out or safety issue.

About Padmalatha Ravi 40 Articles
Padmalatha Ravi is an independent journalist and filmmaker.

1 Comment

  1. Toilets what toilets. why should Bangalore have them. In every western country and some asian countries one can go to toilets however in Bangalore one cant find it and even if one does find a public toilet you will see a bunch of men peeing around it standing there. so what is the point. India can never be a progressive country and Bangalore can never be a world class city when it does not offer even basic safety and amenities for people to use. On MG road only toilet one can use is in Nilgiris where one has to ask the key and get it. rest fo the places dont allow you to use toilet even in shopping malls! If this continues Bangalore will deteriorate into one of the grungy cities where people live but no one will bother to come. wake up bangalore and create civic amenities. Mens toilet should be located well away from womens for safety. In malleshwaram just go to the toilet and see a whole bunch of men peeing outside. what a civilized nation and city.

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