Following a rape case in Delhi, Uber Cab’s operations and services have been banned by the Delhi Government. Uber cab driver, Shiv Kumar Yadav, who is accused of raping a 27-year old MNC executive in the cab was arrested from Mathura. The Transport Department of Delhi has banned the Transport services of Uber cabs.
“The transport department has banned all activities related to providing of any transport service by www.uber.com with immediate effect. The department has also blacklisted the company from providing any transport service in the NCT of Delhi in future,” the Delhi Government said in an official statement.
The accused managed to get a character certificate despite being involved and acquitted in a Delhi rape case in 2011. The additional DCP of the Southeast Delhi Police issued a certificate to the accused driver in August 2014.
It is not only Uber that has been banned from continuing its operations. The transport authorities in Delhi have also banned Ola Cabs, TaxiForSure and other taxi service providers who are running their operations through web based technology and have not been permitted to do so by the authorities.
Currently, the authorities at the Delhi Transport have permitted 6 taxi companies, namely, Meru Cab, Mega Cab, Easy Cab, Air Cab, Chanson Cab and Yo Cab. These six taxi companies are licensed with the Transport Department for ‘Radio Taxis’ in the NCR.
In a statement released by Uber, the company said, “Safety is our #1 priority and in India, Uber exclusively partners with registered for-hire drivers who have undergone the commercial licensing process, hold government issued IDs, state-issued permits, and carry full commercial insurance. Uber also has a GPS trace and record of all trips that occur on the platform – information that has been shared with the authorities. We will continue to cooperate fully with law enforcement officials in their investigation to bring this crime to justice.
We will also work with the community, with government and the technology industry to find more ways to promote safety in transportation, particularly for women – both here in Delhi and throughout India.”
Uber also mentioned in its official statement that it had provided all the required information to the local authorities, post the rape incident. Uber is operating in Bangalore, Pune, Kochi, Hyderabad, Mumbai, Chennai, Ahmedabad, Chandigarh, Jaipur and Kolkata.
TaxiForSure, Ola Cabs, Uber and TaxiPixi have been providing mobile app based taxi booking services in Delhi since some months. Nearly, 10,000 taxis are operating through web based applications. The Ministry of Home Affairs has asked other state governments to stop the functioning of web based transport services.
However, Nitin Gadkari, Union Transport Minister, is not in for of banning the cab services. The minister told the media, “It doesn’t make sense to ban services. Tomorrow, if something happens on a bus we can’t ban that. It is the system that needs to be changed. Banning will only cause inconvenience to the people.”
Gadkari insisted on having a new digitalized system where everyone’s track record can be viewed.
With Uber reeling under negative publicity in India, other players in the market like Ola Cabs, TaxiForSure and others are facing the heat. This incident has turned things worse for the company that had immense opportunity to tap the Indian market. Needless to say, its competitors too, are facing the consequences.