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Social media brings justice: Police arrest Uber driver for molestation after friend shares story on Facebook

Within 24 hours of the Facebook post the Uber suspended the driver and later he was arrested by the Mumbai Police.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
August 20, 2016 2:11:04 pm

uber, uber mumbai, uber rape case, uber mumbai molestation, molestation, uber driver arrested, driver molest foreigner, mumbai driver molest woman, uber suspend driver, mumbai police, mumbai news, india news, latest newsReports of molestation, rape and sexual abuse against women is a reoccurring phenomenon these days. It’s disturbing but nevertheless a hard reality and at most times, our social media feeds are filled with such atrocities with people venting out their anger. Sometimes these posts are ignored and at other times people cope with it with a long sigh. Whatever be your reaction, you simply can’t undermine the power of social media and a post on Facebook proves how.

A Facebook user Viola Wadia on August 18, wrote a post expressing her rage against a Uber driver in Mumbai. In the post, Wadia wrote that a friend, a expatriate working in the city was molested by a driver on the night of August while taking a trip from Pali Hill in Bandra to Andheri.

The post reads: “She asked us if Uber was safe and all of us jumped to assure her that she was in BOMBAY and she had nothing to worry about. Unfortunately we were proved wrong because this Uber driver tried to molest her on their way to Versova.”

Wadia added how the driver, identified as Shehbaaz was initially friendly and engaged in small talks with the victim. The driver even urged the victim to come and sit in the passenger seat. Having refused to do that, the driver made a silly excuse of cleaning the back screen citing low visibility. She was surprised when he came to the back seat under the pretext of cleaning the window from the inside and proceeded to put his hand on her thigh and tried to feel her up.

The woman, however, managed to escape and reached home safely after she yelled and protested against the audacity of the driver.

Wadia took to social media to let everyone know what happened and expressed extreme anger on how a cosmopolitan city like Mumbai, where women feels ‘safe’ to travel at night has turned out to be such. In her post, she added, “But what angers me is that this has happened in Bombay! I cannot believe this happened to my friend….And as people of this city that has always been progressive when it comes to women, where I feel safe to drive home at 3am, we cannot keep quiet.”

She urged for quick action from the police and Uber. The post which was shared over 10,000 times drew attention quickly, and just within 24 hours not only did Uber suspend the driver but the Mumbai police acted too and arrested the accused on Friday.

The woman who wrote the post eventually approached Santacruz police station, where an FIR was registered against the accused. Mumbai Police spokesperson Ashok Dudhe said that based on the complaint, they registered an FIR and arrested Shehbaaz.

Last year, an Uber driver, Shiv Kumar Yadav, was sentenced to life imprisonment for raping a woman executive in his taxi in Delhi in December 2014. An Uber spokesperson said, “Uber has a zero tolerance policy towards any sort of harassment or misconduct. We have suspended the driver from our platform and have shared all details related to the trip and the driver with the relevant authorities for official investigation.”

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