A woman who took an Uber cab to go to the Hyderabad airport on Thursday has alleged that the driver was masturbating during the drive.
In a post on Facebook on Thursday, Uma Sharma described a disgusting incident that left her disturbed.
"Today my #Uber driver thought it perfectly normal to masturbate while dropping me to the airport," she wrote.
"As soon as we were on the relatively empty ORR in #Hyderabad, he slowed the car to about a 50 kmph and kept glancing back in the rearview mirror. After about 5mins when I realized what he was doing, I shouted and asked him to stop the car - unfazed, and continuing his act, he very nonchalantly asked me what was wrong. After much screaming, he reluctantly stopped the car, and continued standing on the road until I took a picture of him and threatened to go to the cops."
Uma said that though she shouted and got him to stop the car, she was scared that he could harm her even as he looked blankly at her "without an ounce of guilt".
"I was scared- as a woman alone in a still-unfamiliar city. Scared of what else he may do since I'd threatened him. Scared that he may return while I waited on the road for another cab. Scared at how utterly powerless I felt when he blankly looked at me, without an ounce of guilt on his face. And most of all, scared that this was probably not the first time he'd done this- yet he was still out there, just a matter of time until he did the same, or God forbid, did worse with some other woman."
Uma's post comes at a time when women across the world are using the the "Me Too" hashtag to speak up about sexual abuse and harassment they face. In the post, Uma also mentioned the hashtag saying, "Today, I shudder to think how many of these #metoo statuses were because of the same vile men who repeated their actions - only because we were too scared to speak up."
Criticizing Uber's driver verification process, Uma further said that she will file a complaint with the police.
"So today, I choose to speak up and I won't stop until #UberIndia takes responsibility for their non-existent driver verification and complete disregard for their passengers safety. I’m also taking this up with the cops to initiate action against this worthless excuse of a man," she wrote.
In a statement to India Today, Uber India said that it had barred the driver's access to the Uber app following the complaint.
"What's been described has no place on our app. Our community guidelines clearly reject such inappropriate behaviour. The driver partner's access to the Uber app has been barred," it said.