File photo: Shiv Kumar Yadav at a Delhi court.
The finance executive who has accused an Uber driver of raping her in Delhi has asked a top New York lawyer to examine whether she can sue the app-based taxi service for negligence in the US, her family told NDTV today. Uber is headquartered in San Francisco.
"We have been in talks over the last few weeks, which led to me being retained," the New York-based employment lawyer Douglas Wigdor said in an email to Reuters, declining to comment on the basis or timing of any case.
The 27-year-old was raped in December in Delhi. She says she fell asleep in the cab on her way home from dinner and was then taken to a deserted area not far from her home in north Delhi where the driver 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 two years ago in the capital.
The driver, Shiv Kumar Yadav, is being tried by a fast-track court in the capital. He was identified yesterday by the woman as the attacker, said the public prosecutor to reporters on Thursday.
Uber was banned in Delhi after the sexual assault. The government said it had failed to conduct basic background checks of its drivers. The company said there were no defined rules in India on background checks for commercial transport licences.
Mr Wigdor was the lawyer for Nafissatou Diallo, the New York hotel maid, who accused Dominique Strass-Kahn of assaulting her in a hotel in 2011; he was chief of the International Monetary Fund at the time. The case was reportedly settled for six million dollars.