Reza Abid Ali, 43, an executive at a car dealership, has not moved a finger despite seven brain surgeries; (above) The Uber car that was seized from the spot
Bandra cops take company’s name out of FIR despite the driver’s arrest on the spot and the car’s seizure.
A Khar resident has sent a legal notice to Uber four months after a car operated by the cab hailing service knocked down her husband leaving him in a coma and all attempts by her to get the multinational to accept responsibility for the accident failed.
Nahid Ali, 40, whose husband, Reza Abid Ali, 43, has not moved a finger in four months even after undergoing seven brain surgeries, has not only sent a notice to Uber’s India office, but has also marked its international headquarters at San Francisco on it.
The notice, which names Uber founder Travis Kalanick and the head of operations Pierre-Dimitri Gore-Coty, demands that the company not only pay for Reza Abid’s treatment, but also adequately compensate the family. The notice says the victim was the sole breadwinner for the family comprising his mother, sister, wife and two children – 16-year-old son and nine-year-old daughter. “Although the pain and agony of the injuries cannot be quantified, the compensation must secure the children’s future in some manner,” the notice reads.
Between Bhabha Hospital, where Reza Abid was taken immediately after the accident, Bombay Hospital where a series of surgeries where performed on him, and Holy Family where he is now admitted, the family has already spent over Rs 60 lakh on Reza Abid’s treatment.
Nahid Ali has alleged that the FIR registered at the Bandra police station does not mention Uber despite the police having arrested the car’s driver from the spot and seized the vehicle. She has also claimed that for the past one-and-half months, as her husband battles for his life, no Uber representative has been in touch with the family.
When contacted by this newspaper on Friday, an Uber spokesperson said the company is ready to assist the authorities in any investigation. “We are extremely saddened to hear about this incident, and wish Reza a speedy recovery. We are looking into the circumstances around the trip,” he said.
On November 14, Reza Abid, an executive at Four Seasons Automobile, Mahalaxmi, was headed home on his bike when an Uber cab knocked him down in Bandra. The cab driver, who tried to flee but was caught by traffic constable Dadami Kadam posted at a traffic light nearby, had tried to enter a one-way lane from the wrong end when the accident happened. The impact of the collision was so intense that Reza Abid was tossed in the air and landed on his head.
Nahid, who was expecting Reza to be home by 8:30 pm, received a call instead informing her about the accident. “Merely 45 minutes before the call, I had spoken to Reza asking him what would he like to have for dinner. When I reached Bhabha, doctors told me that there was no hope of his survival.”
Reza’s family members and his friends allege that an Uber representative forced the cops to not menion the campany’s name in the FIR. In fact, while the accident took place at 8 pm on November 14, the FIR was registered at 5 am on November 15 and backdated to the previous evening.
That is not all. The car number mentioned in the FIR was wrong. It was corrected only after the victim’s family brought it to the police’s notice.
Senior Inspector Pandit Thackeray of Bandra police denied there was any deliberate delay in filing of the FIR. “The FIR was filed in time against the accused and he was booked for rash and negligent driving. I will personally look into why Uber’s name was not included in the FIR,” he said. MZM Legal’s Zulfikar Memon, who is representing Reza Abid’s family, said this was not just another case of rash driving. The victim, the only earning member of the family is in a vegetative state. Moreover, the manipulation in the FIR demonstrates foul play by Uber in an attempt to cover up the crime,” he said.