Update: Following this case being taken up by the police, Uber has just been banned from operating in the capital by the Delhi state government, for ‘misleading customers’, reports The Economic Times. Our original report continues below…
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A female passenger who rode in an Uber cab in the capital city on Friday night was allegedly raped by her driver, Shiv Kumar Yadav, aged 32. Yadav, who was apprehended by police yesterday in connection with the crime, was previously arrested in another rape case in 2011 and spent seven months in prison, though he claims to have been acquitted in the case.
Huffington Post India reports that Yadav, who has been with Uber for over six months, had not had his local address and mobile phone number verified by the company and didn’t have a commercial badge required to drive a cab in New Delhi.
It’s possible that the incident could have been avoided with a more stringent background check on the driver. While Uber claims to partner only “with registered for-hire drivers who have undergone the commercial licensing process, hold government issued IDs, state-issued permits, and carry full commercial insurance,” it hires only three executive employees per city at launch, who may or not have the capacity to run rigorous checks; rivals hire 50 employees and up per city in India.
The cab service has said that it has provided local authorities with the driver’s details and trip information. CEO Travis Kalanick in his statement said that Uber will work with the government “to find more ways to promote safety in transportation, particularly for women – both here in Delhi and throughout India.”
We’ve reached out to Uber for comments on these developments and will post updates as soon as we hear back.