Mumbai: A 30-year-old Mumbai-based journalist has alleged that she was harassed and assaulted by a fellow passenger in an Uber Pool cab while she was heading to her Lower Parel office on Monday. She was allegedly attacked by her Uber Pool co-passenger after the latter got angry at being “dropped last”. June Paul has posted the incident on Facebook and Twitter, wherein she claimed that the accused started shouting at the driver because “she paid the most and was still getting dropped last”. The incident turned violent when June intervened.
Paul recounted the incident and posted pictures of herself after the assault on social media. As per Paul’s tweets, a woman in her 30s apparently scratched her face, made racist remarks and pulled her hair after she intervened in a squabble between the woman and the driver. She tried to retaliate when the woman was about to get off but the accused threatened and attacked her.
“I tried to save my face but the woman had already scratched it. I was dumbstruck as the woman pulled my hair and beat me up before she ran off inside Urmi Estate,” Paul said in the tweet. According to the tweets, a case has been filed against the assailant. However, Uber is refusing to provide the attacker’s details to Mumbai Police, citing ‘customer privacy’.
Uber got panned on Twitter by many, who criticised it for refusing to offer information. Many said the firm cooperates only when the assailant is a man. In the evening, the company responded on the journalist’s tweet thread.A spokesperson from Uber said, “What’s been described is deeply upsetting and is completely against our community guidelines. The co-rider in question cannot any longer access the app.”
In December last year, the issue of women’s safety in app-based cabs was taken up by the Supreme Court, which asked the Centre for suggestions on the matter. The court asked if it was possible to have a regulatory mechanism to check sexual harassment in app-based taxies like Uber and Ola. The case is pending in the court.