A young woman from Bengaluru has alleged that an Ola cab driver held her hostage in his car and harassed her. Speaking to OneIndia, the victim alleged that her complaints to the cab aggregator yielded no results and that the driver continued to harass her through phone calls the next day.
The woman alleged that the driver enabled child lock in the car and started misbehaving with her in an isolated portion of the outer ring road. "I raised a complaint with Ola on Sunday night and was assured of action. The driver kept calling me and another friend all day on Monday for raising a complaint and that is when I contacted Ola again. I had to take help from the police to stop him from harassing me. I am worried about the safety of all women who take Ola Cabs," the victim told OneIndia.
The victim hailed a cab at around 10 PM on Sunday from Indiranagar locality of Bengaluru. The victim alleged that while passing through the outer ring road, the driver attempted to touch her inappropriately. "I pushed his hand and tried to get out of the car when I realised that the child lock has been engaged. I started banging on the car window and that is when he released the lock. I ran out of the car," she explained.
What came as a shocker for the victim is Ola's response to the entire episode. "I raised a complaint immediately and was assured of action but the driver kept harassing me. He knew my address and could have caused me harm. What is the company doing to protect women like me? I have opted for their premium service for my safety and yet I faced harassment," she said.
The victim approached the police who warned the driver but she did not file a complaint. "The driver stopped calling me after being warned by the police and hence I did not pursue the matter with the police but I do want to know what action Ola has taken against their driver," she added raising concerns over the safety of many like her.
Ola, when contacted by OneIndia News, issued a standard statement expressing "regret" over the incident.
"We regret the unfortunate experience the customer had during their ride. We have zero tolerance to such incidents and the driver has been suspended from the platform as an immediate action upon receiving the complaint. We have also urged the customer to lodge a formal complaint with the authorities. Safety of customers is our priority and we will continue to extend our full support to this investigation against the said driver," said a statement from Ola spokesperson.