Mumbai: Passenger says Ola driver dozed off during ride

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A Thane resident on Tuesday claimed the driver of the Ola cab he booked was sleepy during the ride and came close to crashing into other vehicles.

Prashant Rao said the incident happened on December 15 when he hailed an Ola cab from Lokandwala in Andheri to his home in neigbouring Thane some thirty minutes past midnight and identified the driver as Rashid Ahmed Sayyad.

"I found the driver sleeping even before the journey began. I was sitting beside the driver and he occasionally dozed off. He missed hitting a car two or three times. He fell asleep when the car was on a bridge as well," Rao claimed.

Rao said he had to drive the car for a major part of the journey as the driver was unable to remain awake at the wheel.

"I registered a complaint with Ola the next day as I was unable to connect to their helpline after the ride. The driver told me had been driving the cab without a break since 4am that day," he said.

Ola said it had suspended the driver.

"The driver partner will have to undergo counseling, retraining and demonstrate corrective action to be eligible to re-register on the platform," said a Ola spokesperson.

A union functionary said they are forced to drive 29 days a month for almost 14-15 hours.

"If they don't drive for long periods, like 14-15 hours, they cannot give the daily lease amount to Ola, Uber etc," said Anand Kute, organising secretary of Maharashtra Rajya Rashtriya Kamgar Sangh.

Section 13 of Motor Transport Workers Act stipulates that an "adult motor transport worker shall be required or allowed to work for more than eight hours in any day and forty-eight hours in any week".

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