Riding Life Through Riding Bus


Kolkata: A mindset that never accept women beyond a periphery. May be that is the only thing amazes us each time. In a growing busy highway, a 42 years old Pratima Podder runs a bus in Nimta-Howrah route three to four times in a day. In the age of feminism among the pro-feminist or anti-feminist she is the woman running a bus in the city with care for the passengers.

Pratima Podder is married to Shibeshwar Podder who was a bus driver. Due to the financial crisis in family she learnt driving to help her husband. In spite of various interventions from family and society she made her choice wisely with support of her in-laws and husband. She used to run an ambulance for a hospital in Saltlake when was 30 years old.

Nothing is less important in life and women are allowed everywhere, these words of her husband puts her frontier in life and her firm words shows the inspiration and gratitude for her husband for knowing the unknown. When Shibeshwar Podder was a driver of Nimta-Howrah route, Pratima used to be the bus conductor. But a sudden accident of her husband took the turn to a new dimension. Now she can recall all her bad days when she had to manage her husband who was bed-ridden, her sick mother-in-law and their children. Riding life with the speed of a bus.

Pratima is flawlessly successful in her life as her children are grown up with morals in life, studying in Jadavpur University. One has participated in swimming and another one in gymnastic in national level. But it’s a straight influence of Pratima as she was a gymnast too in early days.

She took a revolutionary step as the notion of people is to deny a woman with a steering taking people to their destination. She took the challenge and won the game without any opponent as she is equally responsible for the passengers like a mother. And she is a firm believer of one’s own capacity and vision for life.

This real life story is questioning the comfort of twenty first century’s women and security which only comes in covered car. She is challenging the scenario of the society and structure of the brain which only satisfy the a particular type.

Reported By: Debjani Sarkar

Edited By: Susmita Das