Uber has made headlines again but for all the wrong reasons. This time the Centre has asked Uber India to take some actions against its two drivers who had harassed disability rights activist Arman Ali. The alleged harassment cause Arman Ali to miss his flight and a meeting last month and had to book another flight ticket for Rs 14,000.
The incident took place in Chennai on 20th June. Sadly, this would not be the first time that a person has reported a case of harassment against one of the Uber drivers. Lately, social media has been flooded with similar stories of the users getting harassed by the drivers. But Uber has seldom taken any step against their drivers. The ministry for social justice and empowerment, gave a written complaint against Uber asking it ‘to look into the matter and take appropriate action against the erring drivers.’
Ali’s, the Executive Director of National Centre for Promotion of Employment of Disabled People (NCPEDP), accusations are that the first driver canceled the trip around 15 minutes after verbally confirming it, and the second driver refused to put his wheelchair in the backseat, and had apparently ‘pushed (it) out of the cab’ and canceled the trip. The NCPEDP in its Facebook page shared the letter written by the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities under the ministry of social justice and empowerment (MSJE).
Encouraged that the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities, MSJE has taken notice of Arman Ali, ED, NCPEDP’s issue with Uber India and has issued a stern letter demanding action against the erring driver. This is a wake-up signal to all private/ public service providers to ensure that accessibility is ingrained across all services. #RPWDAct#CRPD #accessibility. – The post read
Ali made a Facebook post describing his traumatic experience with Uber and had tagged the Prime Minister’s Office and Narendra Modi. Ali mentioned that Uber India had apologized to him and offered to refund the cancellation fee of Rs 45 only. A spokesperson for Uber India has mentioned that Uber does not condone any discrimination.