Female autorickshaw drivers in Mumbai and Thane want to put the brakes on sexist abuse. Photo: YouTube

Female autorickshaw drivers in Mumbai and Thane complain that they are being subjected to sexist abuse by their male colleagues.

“Go where prostitutes are if you want to do business,” a male autorickshaw driver in Thane allegedly told a female colleague, according to NDTV.

It has been reported that the 150-odd female drivers operating in the streets of Thane are harassed and abused by male rickshaw drivers. Most of them are forced to confine themselves to an “only women” spot near Thane’s train station.

Apparently, this issue is a result of feuding between rickshaw drivers over passenger share.

Female autorickshaw drivers in Mumbai and Thane have been issued 465 licences, thanks to a government scheme that reserves 5 per cent of permits for women.

Anamika Avinash Bhalerao, 42, who became Thane’s first auto-rickshaw driver in 2016 and trains female drivers, said even traffic policemen harass them.

Recently, a police case of harassment was registered and a male rickshaw driver was arrested.

Many women feel they are being repeatedly targeted due to their gender, but male drivers often deny the problem exists.