Uber rape case: Accused driver convicted by Delhi court
A Delhi court on Tuesday convicted a former driver of app-based cab hailing service Uber for raping a 25-year-old passenger last December and said it would hear arguments on the quantum of sentence later this week.
Additional sessions judge Kaveri Baweja announced the verdict in a packed courtroom at 10.50 am, finding Shiv Kumar Yadav guilty of rape, kidnapping, assault and criminal intimidation.
“Guilty of all charges,” Baweja said, adding that arguments on the quantum of sentence would be heard on October 23.Public prosecutor Atul Shrivastava said Yadav had been found guilty “for all charges against him, which include rape”.
Yadav, a resident of Uttar Pradesh, had raped the passenger while driving her home from a dinner with friends at Vasant Vihar in South Delhi.Yadav was followed closely by his wife as he was escorted out of the courtroom after the verdict.
Uber India president Amit Jain said the firm was “pleased” with the verdict and had made improvements to ensure the safety of passengers.
Sexual assault is a terrible crime and we’re pleased this driver has now been brought to justice. Safety is a priority for Uber and we’ve made many improvements – in terms of new technology, enhanced background checks and better 24/7 customer support – as a result of the lessons we learned from this awful case,” Jain said in a statement.
Uber, he said, “can always do better” and is continually looking for ways to improve safety.
The verdict came barely a month after the Supreme Court dismissed Yadav’s plea to recall 13 witnesses in his trial, including the victim. The Delhi high court had allowed this plea in February.
Hindustan Times had earlier exclusively reported that the victim was being threatened as the trial wound down. The executive had also identified the accused during her deposition in court.
Yadav had insisted on his innocence since his arrest in Mathura on December 7. His lawyer DK Misra told the court that police had conducted a hurried and shoddy probe under pressure from the government, while public prosecutor Srivastava contended that DNA evidence and GPS records from the taxi driven by Yadav confirmed the victim’s stand.
The victim had also sued Uber in a San Francisco court. She had demanded damages to compensate her for the trauma but later withdrew the civil suit in the US.
credit : hindustantimes