Gurugram, April 23 (IANS) Ride-hailing major Uber on Thursday said it has started disbursing grants to the first batch of 55,000 drivers from its Driver Fund in India and by the end of this week, Rs 20 crore will reach the drivers’ accounts in these difficult COVID-19 times.
Uber set up the Driver Fund with an initial commitment of Rs 25 crore to support drivers amid the ongoing pandemic.
In response to Uber’s appeal to raise an additional Rs 25 crore, more than 23,000 Uber riders and employees contributed Rs 2.15 crore while NGOs and corporations have donated an additional Rs 4.28 crore.
The aim is to generate Rs 50 crore to benefit the driver-partners.
“We are continuing to disburse and we will reach close to Rs 20 crore by the end of this week,” Pavan Vaish, Head of Central Operations, Uber India and South Asia, told IANS.
“Over the coming few days, we will continue to report fresh contributions and disbursements from the Uber Care Driver Fund,” he added.
Several drivers appreciated the generosity on part of Uber.
Payal Verma, a New Delhi-based driver and single mother of three daughters, said: “These past days (since the lockdown) have been tough, and we haven’t been able to earn any money. I want to thank you for helping me financially”.’
The Driver Fund has been created in partnership with Give India and Samhita to directly transfer grants into the accounts of thousands of driver partners to enable them meet immediate and essential family needs.
Uber aims to raise a total of Rs 50 crore for its fund through contributions from its employees, riders, CSR funds and citizens through a partnership with Milaap, a leading crowdfunding organization.
“I would like to take this opportunity to thank our riders, Uber employees, corporations and NGOs who’ve opened their hearts and wallets to support drivers, who’re the core of our business,” said Vaish.