New Delhi Bans Uber After Driver Is Accused Of Rape
The announcement came two days after a woman was attacked by her Uber driver while on her way home from work the night of Dec. 6.
Updated — Dec. 8, 10:42 a.m. ET
Shiv Kumar Yadav, the Uber driver who reportedly raped his passenger on Dec. 6, was arrested by New Delhi police on Sunday, Dec. 7.
After the arrest, it was confirmed by police officials that the arrested driver had spent almost two years in jail on earlier rape charges.
According to what police officials told the Hindustan Times, Yadav was jailed in 2011 in connection to another rape case. He was released after the alleged victim was said to become hostile in court and her statements began to contradict each other.
As reported by HT, Yadav, who was a cab driver at that time as well, picked up the girl from a pub in Gurgaon, the city in which she worked, then took her to a secluded place in Chattarpur and allegedly raped her in the car.
Several Indian media organizations, citing anonymous police officials, reported that Yadav allegedly described details of the incident to authorities. The Times of India reported that he told police interrogators, "I made a mistake, what do I do?"
"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," Mathur said, implying that if Uber were licensed under the Radio Taxi Act, it would've taken a more stringent look at Yadav's past record.
"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," he added.
Delhi's police also said that Uber did not carry out proper background checks on Yadav or properly register his residential address, the New York Times reported.
They also said that Uber had not registered Yadav's vehicle as a cab, or installed a global positioning system, as is mandatory for commercial taxis in the city.
The only tracking method Uber had of tracking Yadav's position was an app on his phone. Yadav was able to disappear off Uber's radar, simply by turning his phone off, NDTV reported.
A senior investigator said: "The iPhone that was provided to him by Uber to track his location was switched off," the Hindustan Times reported. The SIM card on the phone was also reportedly registered to another driver.
However, Uber CEO Travis Kalanick seemed to suggest that the New Delhi authorities bore some responsibility, criticizing "absent" background checks in a statement:
What happened over the weekend in New Delhi is horrific. Our entire team's hearts go out to the victim of this despicable crime. We will do everything, I repeat, everything to help bring this perpetrator to justice and to support the victim and her family in her recovery.
We will work with the government to establish clear background checks currently absent in their commercial transportation licensing programs. We will also 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.