Uber Bans Woman Called Swastika Chandra Over Her Name, Later Apologises

During the payment stage, she received a notification informing her that her name violated the company's terms.

Uber Bans Woman Called Swastika Chandra Over Her Name, Later Apologises

Uber eventually apologized to the Australian woman and reinstated her account.

A woman was banned from using Uber's ride-share and food delivery service because her first name was flagged as offensive. According to the New York Post, Australian woman, Swastika Chandra explained her first name meant ''good luck'' in Sanskrit and it was a common name in Fiji, where she grew up.

The incident happened in October last year when Ms Chandra attempted to order food from Uber Eats. During the payment stage, she received a notification informing her that her name violated the company's terms.

''I was putting in an order for food one afternoon and went to the payment stage and this pop-up came up saying, 'Your first name is in violation and you need to change your name on the app,'' the 35-year-old told A Current Affair.

Notably, in Western contexts, the term is predominantly linked with the Nazi Party of Germany. It took five months and the intervention of the Hindu Council of Australia and the New South Wales attorney-general to get her account reinstated.

''They don't know that the Hindus used it for thousands of years before Hitler used it in the wrong way. It is a very common name. I know four or five other girls with the same name. In school, we had two or three other girls with the same name – It means good luck and it means good things for me. I'm very proud of my name. I believe in the good that comes with it and I'm not changing it for anyone,'' she added. 

The Jewish Board of Deputies also backed Ms Chandra's fight, telling A Current Affair: "There is a difference between Ms Chandra innocently using her name and the deployment of a sinister symbol."

Uber also issued an apology to Ms Chandra and issued a statement. ''Uber is committed to facilitating a safe and welcoming environment for all users. For that reason, Uber has a global policy of restricting access to users whose names entered into the Uber app contain potentially offensive words. 

We understand that there are different cultural nuances to names, and therefore our teams address incidents like this on a case-by-case basis to ensure we evaluate each account fairly. In this case, after reviewing MS. Chandra's request, we reinstated her access to the app. We have apologized to Ms Chandra for the inconvenience this caused her, and we appreciate her patience as we reviewed the matter, which took longer than we hoped it would,'' the statement read.