In the light of the importance of social distancing to curb the spread of coronavirus, Ola and Uber have suspended their shared rides temporarily.
"In our efforts to curb the spread of COVID- 19, we are temporarily suspending the "Ola Share" category until further notice… The temporary suspension of Ola Share services is an attempt to encourage social distancing for all cases of essential travel for citizens,” Ola said in a statement.
However, all other ride offerings, including Micro, Mini, and Prime as well as Rental and Outstation services are still accessible, even on March 22 during the Janta curfew when it will have limited availability of rides for essential travel.
Meanwhile, Uber too, has suspended its ‘Uber Pool’ service.
"We are determined to help reduce the spread of coronavirus in the cities we serve. With that in mind, we are suspending the Uber Pool service across India," an Uber spokesperson said in a statement.
Uber too, will be offering services to meet the essential and urgent travel needs of people on March 22.
Ola has also announced that it would cover the loss of income for its driver partners and their spouses in case they test positive for COVID-19.
All eligible Ola driver-partners and their spouses shall be covered by a floater sum of Rs 30,000 under which they can receive a compensation of Rs 1000 per day for a maximum of 21 days for an individual from the date of a positive diagnosis for COVID- 19.
“This will include hospital and home quarantine prescribed by a qualified medical practitioner, as approved by the Government norms from time to time. Drivers can make a claim for this compensation for themselves and (or) their spouse by providing appropriate medical documents. This coverage comes in with immediate effect and is available for all Ola driver-partners in India across all categories including Ola Bike, Ola Auto, Ola Rentals and Outstation,” Ola said in a statement.
Ola has also partnered with Mfine, to provide free medical help for driver-partners and their family members. Every driver-partner can unlock three free doctor consultations through the Mfine platform which they can avail for themselves or their family members with a special code.
Uber is providing drivers and delivery persons with financial assistance for up to 14 days if they actively drive or deliver with Uber and get diagnosed with COVID-19 or are personally placed in quarantine by a public health authority. This policy is effective until April 6, 2020
“The uncertainty caused by the coronavirus is being felt across the world. But we know it’s especially concerning for anyone who relies on our platform to make a living. That’s why we are providing financial assistance to anyone who drives or delivers with Uber and is diagnosed with COVID-19 or placed in individual quarantine by a public health authority. This assistance is now available worldwide. This is a moment of great challenge, but we are here to support you," Andrew Macdonald, Senior Vice President, Rides and Platform said.