The woman finance executive who was allegedly raped by an Uber taxi driver in Delhi last year has hired a United States-based lawyer, Douglas Wigdor, to sue the cab service provider company in an American court.
Wigdor, who mostly handles sexual assault cases, has represented Nafissatou Diallo, the hotel maid who in 2012 accused former International Monetary Fund chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn of sexual assault.
Wigdor confirmed that the alleged victim of 5 December rape incident approached him to take up the case. "I can confirm that I have been retained by the young lady who was raped by an Uber driver in Delhi, last December. Having met extensively with her and her family while in Delhi, I can only compliment them for their bravery and fortitude during this very difficult time. We will use all of our resources to vindicate my client's rights, hold those responsible for their actions and ensure that this doesn't happen again," The Guardian quoted Wigdor as saying.
As Uber is a US-based company and its conduct is based on policies made in the country, Wigdor is examining the possibility of asking for a US court's jurisdiction in the case. He believes that the US court will consider taking up the case.
The Delhi government has already banned Uber for plying without licence in the National Capital Territory. The Delhi police also accused Uber of failing to keep a track on the drivers hired by the company as the alleged rapist proved to be a serial offender.
The alleged rapist, Shiv Kumar Yadav, is under trial in Delhi and has been charged under Sections 376(2) (m) (rape), 366 (kidnapping), 506 (criminal intimidation) and 323 (voluntarily causing hurt) of the Indian Penal Code. However, he has pleaded not guilty to the charges against him.
Yadav was arrested in December 2014 from his home in Mathura, where he had fled to after committing the crime. Yadav allegedly drove the 25-year-old woman executive to an isolated place after she dozed off in the cab and raped her. He also threatened to insert an iron rod into her genitals if she resisted.