After a former Uber employee Eric Alexander claimed that the rape of a woman in Delhi in December 2014 by an Uber driver was part of a sabotage planned by rival Ola, the latter has now hit back saying that this is an all-time low on morality.
An Ola spokesperson in a statement said, "It is a shame that the privacy and morals of a woman have to be questioned in an attempt to trivialise a horrific crime. It is despicable that anyone can even conceive an attempt to malign competition using this as an opportunity. If this report were to be even remotely true, this is an all-time low on morality and a reflection of the very character of an organisation."
The entire issue has been raked up again after it emerged that Uber's President for Asia Pacific had obtained medical records of the woman who was raped and had even shared it with CEO Travis Kalanick and SVP Emil Michael as per reports by Recode.
Still, soon after, all three began to raise the prospect that Ola â€” Uberâ€™s prime competitor in India â€” was behind the incident to sabotage the company, sources said.
Several executives at Uber were also reportedly shown these records.
What is even more shocking is that based on their understanding of the medical report, the three executives believed that the womanâ€™s story was concocted and not true. Moreover, neither of them have had any medical training to be able to properly analyse the report.
Worse still, other executives, probably the legal department, obtained the report and destroyed Alexanderâ€™s copy, according to the sources. However, itâ€™s not clear if Uber continues to have a copy, Recode reports.
This insensitive handling of the issue by Alexander was one of the 215 claims reported to law firm Perkins Coie, which is conducting an extensive investigation into specific and widespread mismanagement issues at the company along with another law firm Covington & Burling.
The investigation also includes allegations of pervasive sexism and sexual harassment at Uber.
When Recode contacted Uber regarding the 20 employees fired as part of the investigation, the company said that Alexander had not been among those fired.
However, when contacted about his actions, the company said that he is no longer employed there, declining to comment further.
The driver involved in the incident, who already had four criminal charges pending against him, was later sentenced to life in prison.