Starting a new journey, M Veeralakshmi has been named driver of one of the newly launched ‘108’ ambulances and is a ‘first’ in the country, a release from the government said.
The 30-year-old, who was a mother of two, worked as a cab driver earlier.
Foraying into traditionally male-dominated professions, women are now increasingly breaking barriers and making their mark. In a first, a woman was named to drive an ambulance at Tamil Nadu on Monday, as Chief Minister K Palaniswami flagged off 118 as part of an initiative to improve the state’s emergency services.
“Because there was a vacancy I applied for the job and felt I could clear the interview. I only came to know later that I am the first woman in the region, “Veeralakshmi told The Hindu.
“As a driver I don’t care about the road. But I just didn’t want to drive for the sake of sales. In a way, I wanted to help people, and so I decided to become an ambulance driver, M Veeralakshmi added.
Ninety ambulances fitted with life-saving medical equipment, 10 high-tech vehicles for use by 10 government blood banks to transport blood collected in camps, and 18 ambulances provided for anti-COVID tasks by an entertainment channel company.
On March 24, Palaniswami had announced in the Assembly that 500 new ambulances would be allocated to the state at a cost of about Rs 125 crore to further improve the 108 emergency ambulance services. In the first phase 90 ambulances and 10 blood collection vehicles were procured for implementation at an estimated cost of Rs 20.65crore and Rs 3.09 crore respectively.