Re-start timings for women in the Water Works Swimming Pool, Trivandrum immediately

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July 10, 2019

Shri. E.P Jayarajan, Shri. K.KrishnanKutti

Minister of Sports and Minister of Water Resources
Govt. of Kerala

Dear Ministers,

I am a regular user of the Water Works Swimming Pool in Vellayambalam
since 2003. Ever since the pool was renovated in 2015, it is run by
the Sports Authority and not by the Water Authority. This has resulted
in many drastic changes. The SA has increased the rates from Rs. 10/-
per swim to Rs. 80/- and the monthly pass from Rs. 250 to Rs. 2500.
This has made a public pool inaccessible to many especially women,
students, housewives, the poor. The SA  runs the pool as though only men are
entitled to swim - the women's timings ( 9.30 am - 10.30 am) have
often been cut. After an intervention by me to Mr. Sanjayan Kumar,
IFS, Director of Sports and Youth Affairs about two years ago, this
was re-instated but there are no coaches available during this time,.
Neither are there any lifeguards. This along with the expensive rates
has resulted in the numbers of women dropping. Earlier when the WA ran
the pool, an average of 20-25 women swam daily and on weekends the
numbers went up to forty or fifty. Now often there are just one or two
women which has resulted in Mr. Kumar and his associates once again
removing the women's timings.

I suggest that :
1) The pool be handed over to the Water Authority to run as they know
how to run public pools very well.
2) The cost of swimming be reduced from Rs. 80/- to Rs. 25/- for a
swim and the monthly pass be made Rs. 500/-
3) The women's timings be restored from 9.30 am to 10.30 am and women
only lanes be kept during the other timings where women can do FULL
4) Coaching be provided to women and girls during the women only timing.

5) Staff who are courteous and respectful of women swimmers be hired
and those who spend all their time eating and playing with their
mobile phones be fired.

6) Women's timings should be kept intact even during the summer months of April and May when they run children's coaching. WA never cut the women's timing in order to do this. 

Once this is done, the pool will once again be full of women swimmers.
A public pool is essential for the health of the public and women and
girls form half of this group. About time to take us seriously. It is our taxes and money that keep facilities like this going. So we should not be denied access to them. 

I trust that this matter will be taken seriously and the necessary
action will be taken immediately. 

Asha Gopinathan