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Uber drivers to get insurance cover from 1 September

LiveMint logoLiveMint 29-08-2017 Yuvraj Malik

New Delhi: Uber on Tuesday rolled out insurance cover against death and injury for drivers on its platform, a move that could help it retain drivers and prevent them from moving to rival app-based taxi platforms.

Earlier this week, Uber’s senior vice president, global business, David Richter, said India was a priority market for the San Francisco-based firm.

“Outside of the United States, we have three significant markets—India, Brazil and Mexico,” Richter said.

Accident insurance was also one of the key demands of Uber drivers when they staged protests in the national capital, and other metros, against their falling earnings in February.

At an event in New Delhi, Uber said that it had partnered with ICICI Lombard General Insurance to offer the insurance cover to all 450,000 drivers registered on its platform starting 1 September. Uber offers a similar insurance product in select Asian markets including Myanmar and Indonesia.

Uber drivers will receive a cover of up to Rs5 lakh in the event of death and permanent disability, Rs2 lakh for hospitalization and Rs50,000 for out-patient medical expenses.

The rules, however, require the driver to be logged onto the Uber app—in other words: on duty—at the time of the accident. Any claims will also have to be filed through the Uber app, the company said.

Uber is not charging the drivers for the insurance but instead paying a fixed premium for each driver insurance plan. The company declined to disclose how much it will have to pay.

“I am hopeful that all of our driver partners will see this as an exciting step forward as we continue to build our relationship with all of them across India,” said Pradeep Parameswaran, head of central operations, India.

Parameswaran, who looks after the drivers’ side of the business, joined Uber in January after stepping down as chief executive officer of Den Networks.

SoftBank-backed Ola (ANI Technologies Pvt. Ltd), Uber’s local rival, last year announced it would provide motor insurance for drivers through a partnership with Bajaj Allianz.

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