Delhi rape victim's US lawyer blasts Uber audacity

Washington: The American lawyer of a Delhi woman who was allegedly raped by a driver of web-based US taxi firm Uber has expressed surprise at the "audacity" of the company's reported re-entry into the Delhi market.

In a statement emailed to IANS, lawyer Douglas H. Wigdor said they had made it clear to Uber that the rape victim wanted to be part of a consultation process regarding safety procedures to ensure that no other person becomes a victim at the hands of an Uber driver.

"Most unfortunately, this has not happened and we have no confidence that the touted 'India-specific safety measures' will prevent another attack," he wrote.

The lawyer had represented Nafissatou Diallo, the hotel maid who accused IMF managing director Dominique Strauss-Kahn of rape and sexual assault.

Here is the statement from the lawyer:

"According to a news report and an email that they had the audacity to send directly to my client, Uber has announced, just weeks after the tragic rape of my client and during the criminal trial of the Uber driver, that it has re-entered the market in Delhi," he noted.

"While we have no doubt that Uber is focused on it's bottom-line, we are surprised by this development as we had made it clear to Uber that the rape victim wanted to be part of a consultation process regarding safety procedures to ensure that no other person becomes a victim at the hands of an Uber driver.

"Most unfortunately, this has not happened and we have no confidence that the touted 'India-specific safety measures" will prevent another attack."

In a statement on resumption of its services in Delhi, Uber said it had applied for a radio taxi licence and would improve safety by introducing features such as an "in-app emergency button".

The accused driver Shiv Kumar Yadav is currently on trial on rape and kidnapping charges.

Delhi banned Uber and several other web-based taxi firms for failing to carry out adequate driver checks in early December.

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