The police on Sunday nabbed the Uber taxi driver who is accused of raping a 27-year-old woman executive.
According to a NDTV report, 32-year-old Shiv Kumar Yadav was arrested in Mathura, Uttar Pradesh after he fled from Delhi following the incident.
He is expected to be produced before a Delhi court later today.
The incident took place at around 9:30 pm when the woman, who works for a finance company in Gurgaon, was headed back to her home in north Delhi's Inderlok area.
According to a detailed report in the Times of India, the woman had been returning from a party and had fallen asleep in the cab. She had woken up to find the driver in the backseat of the car, molesting her.
The report quotes from her statement as follows:
"I tried to push him away and looked around to find the car at a desolate spot. He slapped me a few times and scratched me on the face and neck during the scuffle. When I tried to scream, he pressed my mouth and threatened to kill me. He said "sariya ghusa doonga pet mein agar chillayi toh" (I will thrust an iron rod into your stomach if you scream). I pleaded with him not to harm me".
The report adds that after raping her, the driver had then taken away her phone. But had given it back to her, after giving her a missed call and telling her that he now had her details and would kill her if she told anyone.
Uber is a US based company, which essentially sells the model of vehicle sharing via smartphone apps. In India it ties up with vehicles that already have taxi permits. However the company is presumed to run background checks on vehicle owners and drivers.
TechCrunch reports that the man had registered with Uber under a false name and had deleted the app from his phone before raping the woman.
Meanwhile the company has released the following statement:
We became aware of the incident this morning. Safety is Uber’s highest priority and we take situations like this very seriously. We are working with the police as they investigate, and will assist them in any way we can to determine what happened. It is also our policy to immediately suspend a driver’s account following allegations of a serious incident, which we have done. In India, we work with licensed driver-partners to provide a safe transportation option, with layers of safeguards such as driver and vehicle information, and ETA-sharing to ensure there is accountability and traceability of all trips that occur on the Uber platform.
It also tweeted from its Delhi account as follows:
We are deeply disturbed by the reported incident. Our thoughts are with the victim. We are actively and fully cooperating with authorities.
— Uber Delhi (@Uber_Delhi) December 6, 2014
Uber, which has been aggressively expanding in India over the last few months, announced on Thursday, that it had raised another $1.2 billion in funding and added that it was looking to aggressively expand in Asia.
It has already announced a number of aggressive customer pulling tactics like offering five free rides for any customers using its Paytm wallet service up to Rs 300
The latest incident however is likely to adversely impact the company.
Uber has been pressing its credentials as a safer alternative for women in Indian cities like New Delhi. If all it takes to compromise that safety is the mere deletion of a smartphone app however, that safety is called into question.
Updated Date: Dec 07, 2014 12:43 PM