Thiruvananthapuram

Uber Eats delivery executives launch strike

Online food delivery in the district was partially affected on Saturday with the delivery executives of Uber Eats launching an indefinite strike in protest against wage cuts by the online aggregator.

With the company refusing to concede to their demands, the delivery ‘partners’ have decided to intensify their agitation that was formally launched a day ago, following a hurriedly called meeting of around 350 workers in Poojappura. With more delivery executives likely to close ranks with the agitators, food business is likely to take a significant hit, particularly in the city, in the days to come.

Over 2,000 delivery partners are estimated to work for Uber Eats, which commenced operations in the city one-and-a-half years ago. Many more workers were employed in other parts of the district including Kazhakuttam, Nedumangad and Neyyattinkara.

According to Shaheer, a representative of the agitating workers, the company resorted to unilateral measures, including blocking the accounts of delivery partners without prior notice and reducing basic fares by almost half. The company has also been accused of altering the terms and conditions of the insurance coverage without holding deliberations with the staff.

Workers’ demand

In their petition submitted to the company, the agitators also demanded that delivery partners be served at least three warnings before their accounts are blocked. They have also proposed rearranging trip schedules in accordance with the peak hours of business to fix specific incentive rates for each schedule.

Besides college students, many others, including women, have enrolled as delivery executives. Besides Uber Eats, the emergence of other online aggregators, including Swiggy and Zomato, threw open a new avenue for livelihood for large sections.

Association likely

However, the absence of a representative mechanism has been cited as a lacunae in the business model, posing questions regarding job security and service conditions. That appears to be set for a change with the agitators resolving to constitute an association to bring every online delivery partner under an umbrella.

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Printable version | Mar 5, 2021 11:27:13 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Thiruvananthapuram/uber-eats-delivery-executives-launch-strike/article30308254.ece

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