New Delhi: A Delhi court today convicted an Uber cab driver for raping a young woman passenger last year, in a case that sparked massive outrage and reignited a debate on the safety of women in the national capital.
On December 5, Shiv Kumar Yadav had sexually assaulted the 25-year-old woman - a finance executive working in Gurgaon - in the cab she had hired to get home after dinner with her friends. Yadav was arrested two days later from Mathura in Uttar Pradesh.
The court today found Yadav guilty on all four charges - rape, abduction, intimidation and causing harm. The 32-year-old faces a maximum punishment of life sentence for the offences. The court will hear arguments on his sentencing on Friday, October 23.
"Shiv Kumar Yadav is convicted of all charges (framed against him). To come up for arguments on quantum of sentence on October 23," Additional Sessions Judge Kaveri Baweja said in a brief order.
Yadav, who was present in the court room, appeared distraught as the verdict was pronounced. He was immediately whisked away by cops and was taken to Tihar Jail where he has been lodged since his arrest last year.
According to the police, the woman fell asleep in the cab and was then taken to a deserted area not far from her home in north Delhi where Yadav raped her and threatened to violate her with an iron rod, a barbarous tactic used in the fatal gang-rape of a young student on a moving bus in the capital in 2013.
Yadav was tried by one of the special fast-track courts introduced in 2013 following the fatal gang-rape of the student, a crime that had shocked the nation and sparked unprecedented protests.
Uber was banned from operating in Delhi in the aftermath of the attack on the young woman executive.
The taxi-hailing app had drawn fire for failing to conduct adequate background checks after it emerged that Yadav had been accused of assaulting other women, although he had not been convicted in any of the cases.