We are mostly ignorant to exploitation of women at workplaces. They become victims of emotional and physical harassment and things are not much different for female captains who are driving Careem services.
Careem is a good source of income for many, but I have met women captains of Careem, who have been victims of harassment and exploitation by users and organization they belong to.
Just yesterday evening, I had an experience of traveling with a young woman captain of Careem. When she arrived at my location, she had her purse on front seat so that male customers could sit on the back seat.
This urged me to interview her, so I started with guiding her location to my destination. She did not seem familiar with the routes of the capital city; but that was not the only problem she face on daily routine.
Hardly a few minutes after we started the ride, she received a call from unknown number, telling her that he traveled with her a day ago and finding reasons to talk to her. That unknown guy then told her that he had mistakenly paid double the amount. But wait, should not one get in touch with Careem customer care centre for such issues? She seemed tense and was not driving attentively on the main expressway which brought my concern to ask her of the problem.
She opened up and told that it was a routine torture. She and her friend, who also drives a Careem, face such harassment on daily basis, but nobody cares. “Some rascals tease by sitting on front seat and ask for friendship,” she told.
I asked her what motivates her to drive a Careem. She told that being jobless, she had no other option. “It gets worse when these customers don’t give good rating about their experience. The only reason Careem administration have to cut the bonuses and even block the account,” she expressed. “I shout on customers I don’t feel comfortable with and I will keep doing it. It’s the only way to survive in this business but it hurts our income,” she added.
By witnessing such a treatment, I am concerned of the claim Careem administration gives that Careem is equally useful, my question is, how? And when a woman in society speaks for her rights, the voices against the freedom of the women prevail. The situation also suggests the problem is not confined to the single institution or the venture, but a general mindset of the society.
I request to the Careem administration to please address the issue which you ignore at times. I don’t believe it to be unintentional; you could’ve known the seriousness of this issue but did not do anything to tackle with this. Take measures for the safety of women as soon as possible, this is your responsibility.