Gender parity: Female figures in Mumbai traffic signal lights

Mumbai, Aug 2 (PTI) Traffic signals in Mumbai have got a gender equality boost as a female figure has replaced the male one in colour-coded lights that inform about the right of way, with officials stating the move by the BMC would make the metropolis the first in the country to have gone in for such a change.

The modification in the traffic signal signage system for gender equality will be done at 13 junctions on Veer Savarkar Marg, earlier called Cadell Road, in the city's G/North Ward, with the first having come up at Dadar, a civic official said.

The stretch has 120 signals between the renowned Siddhivinayak Temple in Prabhadevi and Mahim police station, he added.

The road is popular as the cultural spine of Mumbai and the move is part of its 'pedestrianisation', G/North Ward Assistant Municipal Commissioner Kiran Dighavkar told PTI on Sunday.

The idea of modifying the signal signage was among many suggested by experts, and with this, Mumbai will join some cities that will be overhauling its traffic signal signage system, he added.

'The initiative has been taken up so that it can help bring about gender equality. The work on it has started and new signages have been put up in Dadar,' Dighavkar said.

Images of the change at a signal were shared by Maharashtra minister and Shiv Sena leader Aaditya Thackeray who tweeted 'if you've passed by Dadar, you'd see something that will make you proud. BMC is ensuring gender equality with a simple idea- the signals now have women too'.

He thanked Dighavkar, local Sena MLA Sada Sarvankar, city Mayor Kishori Pednekar and Brihanmumbai Municipal Commissioner IS Chahal.

The permission to make the changes were given by the city traffic police to the BMC on July 17, officials added.

Cities like Geneva in Switzerland, and Germany's Dresden, Cologne and Zwicko have female figures alongside male ones as part of the signage, officials said.

Among the more famous ones is the pony-tailed female figure called 'Sofie' installed in Amersfoot in Netherlands in 2000, while Vienna in Austria installed same-sex ones in 2015.

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