The decision was taken in the wake of sexual assault accusations against Uber drivers in the past year.
Mumbai: Uber users have been warned to keep their hands and lips to themselves. According to a new policy of the transportation network firm, one can be banned indefinitely for making out in the back seat of its taxis. The application-based taxi service giant’s policy also states that users’ applications will be deactivated permanently if they throw up in an inebriated state, spill beverages inside the vehicle or behave aggressively towards their drivers.
Uber already implemented the policy in its home country — the United States — in December last year and it came into force in India on March 7. The decision was taken in the wake of sexual assault accusations against Uber drivers in the past year.
In a statement titled Uber Community Guidelines, the firm has put up a set of guidelines for passengers on its Indian website. Some important guidelines state: ‘As our Community Guidelines make clear, you shouldn’t touch or flirt with other people in the car. As a reminder, Uber has a no sex rule.’ It goes on to say, ‘That’s no sexual conduct with drivers or fellow riders, no matter what and you should never hit or otherwise hurt a driver or fellow passenger.’
The document also goes on to explain that use of abusive language or gestures like verbal threats, asking overtly personal questions to the driver, and making any comments or gestures that are aggressive and or sexual would also result in a life ban.
When contacted, a representative of the company said, “The policy came into effect on March 7. No physical contact among passengers of a sexual nature will be tolerated and the person via whose application the ride was booked will be banned from using it.”
A lot of Uber drivers had been complaining to the company about couples engaging in activities of a sexual nature.
One such driver said, “A lot of times couples engage in amorous activities. I can’t say anything as I fear they might give me bad rating, which costs me a penalty of Rs 250 to Rs 500. The additional issue of the police stopping us also arises, but now I am within my rights to complain to Uber if I am uncomfortable.”