COVID-19 pandemic has claimed millions of lives around the world and some people are still taking it lightly. But a recent incident showed how three women harassed and mocked an Uber driver when he asked them to put on their face masks. The incident took place in San Francisco on a Sunday afternoon - all of which was caught on camera.
The viral video shows an Uber driver being harassed, assaulted and even coughed upon by his bully passengers who refused to put on the face masks. The driver, identified as Subhakar Khadka noticed one woman wasn't wearing a face mask and he naturally asks her to put it on. Khadka said he even drove to the nearby gas station so she could buy one, but his legitimate concern was met with racial slurs and abuses.
At one point during the dispute, a woman seated behind Khadka takes off her mask and coughs on him. She then snatches his phone and takes the mask right off his face.
As the video of the incident shared by Khadka went viral on social media, netizens were able to track down the rider who abused and harassed the driver. The woman even posted at least five videos on her Instagram page, which appears to have quite a following with over 18,000 followers. From her Instagram page, it is observed that the woman lives in LA and is a Persian by nationality.
Racial discrimination gone too far
"I never said anything bad to them. I never cursed. I was not raised that way," Khadka said, according to KPIX. He added that one of the women, seen wearing a red top even pepper-sprayed him after getting off the vehicle, San Francisco police confirmed. He had to get out of the car as it was difficult to breathe.
Khadka said he was targeted because of his race. "If I was another complexion, I would have not gotten that treatment from them. The moment I opened my mouth to speak, they realized I'm among one of them, so it's easy for them to intimidate me," he was quoted as saying.
UBER DRIVER COUGHED ON, ASSAULTED & PEPPER SPRAYED— KPIX 5 (@KPIXtv) March 9, 2021
An @Uber driver was assaulted & coughed-upon by a group of women in #SanFrancisco after he refused them service for not wearing masks, in an attack the driver captured on videohttps://t.co/6Muz8wb2ea pic.twitter.com/KMO1vig1tq
Uber described the incident as "appalling." The ride-sharing platform said the rider in question no longer has access to Uber service. As for the driver, Uber gave him $120 in total cleaning funds, which Khadka said isn't nearly sufficient.
"Since you were born and raised here in the United States, don't think the other person is less human," Khadka said in a message to the women.