9 December 2014
Last updated at 06:02
India is one of dozens of countries where Uber is popular
Authorities in India’s capital, Delhi, have banned several internet-based taxi companies after a female passenger alleged that she was raped by a driver contracted to the international taxi-booking service Uber.
The driver has been arrested and remanded in custody.
The ban means taxis from selected services will now attract a fine or even be impounded, officials say.
Delhi banned Uber on Monday for failing to do adequate checks on its drivers.
The service is still accepting bookings on its app and it is not yet clear how the ban will be enforced since Uber taxis do not carry any visible branding.
In an order issued late on Monday, the Delhi government said only six registered radio taxi companies were allowed to operate in the capital.
“All other transport/ taxi service providers through web-based technology, who are not recognised, are prohibited from providing such services…till they get licence/permission from the transport department,” S Roy Biswas, Delhi’s deputy commissioner of transport, said.
Media reports said the ban could hit several such taxi services in the city, and thousands of drivers would be out of work.
The federal government in Delhi has also issued an advisory to all states to ban these cab-booking services.
The 26-year-old woman had used the Uber smartphone app to book a taxi home on Friday night but said she was taken to a secluded area and raped.
Uber has not yet commented on the ban.
On Monday, the company described the incident as “horrific” and said it would do everything “to help bring this perpetrator to justice”.
The latest allegation of rape has again put the spotlight on the issue of sexual violence against Indian women, following a series of recent incidents.
It comes days before the second anniversary of the gang rape and murder of a student on a bus in Delhi, which prompted global outrage and a tightening of the laws on sexual violence.
Meanwhile, #DelhiShamedAgain and #Uber are among the top Twitter trends in India with many people taking to social media to express their outrage at the incident.
Natasha said banning all online taxi companies was “ridiculous”:
Dr Munish Raizada said although India has a new government now, nothing really has changed:
Siddharth Jain said banning Uber was “no solution”: