Indian rape survivor sues Uber, CEO Kalanick for obtaining medical records illegally

Uber Photograph:( Reuters )

WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India Jun 16, 2017, 10.17 AM (IST)

Ride hailing giant Uber found itself in yet another controversy after an Indian woman who was raped by an Uber driver in 2014 filed a lawsuit against the company and its CEO Travis Kalanick for "unlawfully" obtaining her medical records.

The woman said that she was "violated physically" when she was raped by the Uber driver Shiv Kumar Yadav in December 2014 and then a second time when her medical records were accessed by the company and shared by its top executives.

"Sadly, in the United States, Uber executives violated her a second time by unlawfully obtaining and sharing her medical records from that vicious sexual assault and have failed, as of the date of this filing, to apologise to her for this outrageous conduct," the lawsuit said

"It is shocking that Travis Kalanick could publicly say that Uber would do everything to support our client and her family in her recovery when he and other executives were reviewing illegally obtained medical records and engaging in offensive and spurious conspiracy theories about the brutal rape she so tragically suffered," Douglas Wigdor, who filed the lawsuit on behalf of the woman, said in an email response to PTI.

Uber CEO Kalanick has taken an indefinite leave of absence, the company said. Kalanick cited the reason of his mother's death as one of the reasons why he stepped aside. He said that he needed time off "to reflect, to work on myself and to focus on building out a world-class leadership team," AFP reported.

"If we are going to work on Uber 2.0, I also need to work on Travis 2.0 to become the leader that this company needs and that you deserve," the 40-year-old Kalanick said in an email to Uber employees.

The company also unveiled plans calling for major reforms in the company based on a probe led by former US attorney general Eric Holder.

Holder initiated a probe aimed at cleaning up the work culture in the wake of accusations of harassment and discrimination. 

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