Uber, the global cab aggregating service that is courting controversy around the world is on a sticky wicket in India. This comes after the Delhi government banned the cab aggregating service in India, after an alleged rape of a 26 year old professional by a Uber aggregated cab driver in the wee hours of the Friday, the 5th of November 2014.
While the accused has been remanded to judicial custody for further interrogation, here’s the statement from Satish Mathur, the Special Commisioner of the Delhi Transport Department,
The services of Uber have been blacklisted. We have just issued an order saying Uber’s activities stand banned in Delhi. Uber is misleading customers by offering them Taxis with All-India permits that cannot ply in Delhi from point-to-point ferrying customers. In this rape case, the victim was provided a All India Permit Taxi which is not allowed to ferry customers point-to-point in the National capital. We will also be issuing a public notice saying Uber is not authorised to provide any taxi services in the capital so that customers are aware which are the authorised radio Cab services. Right now, we have banned Uber as we came to know only after this incident about its services in Delhi. We too had to log on to the internet to know how the company works. The rules also say that the radio taxi licensee shall be responsible for quality of drivers, their police verification, employer control and supervision of drivers, employee behaviour. The employers shall also ensure that the drivers are totally safe, reliable and trustworthy. But Uber never applied for any permission to us, is not recognised under the Radio Taxi Rules and has flouted most of the laid-down rules.
Uber for its part has issued a statement saying that it will work with the government “to establish clear background checks currently absent in their commercial transportation licensing programs” and partner closely with the groups “who are leading the way on women’s safety here in New Delhi and around the country and invest in technology advances to help make New Delhi a safer city for women.”
The latest updates to this case include the fact that the taxi driver accused of committing the rape on the Uber passenger was recently acquitted of rape in a previous case and had also served time at Tihar Jail. Also, the Delhi Police, as recent as August 2014, has issued a character certificate to the Uber cab driver, which is said to have allowed him to ply services as a taxi driver.