Indian delivery app refuses request for Hindu driver

30th Aug 2019

Elham Asaad Buaras

Zomato food app was at the centre of the latest religious row to hit India earlier this month after the delivery company refused to accommodate a customer who complained that his delivery driver was non-Hindu.

Amit Shukla, a resident of Jabalpur in Madhya Pradesh posted the controversial tweet on July 30: ‘Just cancelled an order on @ZomatoIN. They allocated a non-Hindu rider for my food they said they can’t change rider and can’t refund on cancellation.’

He added that the company was forcing customers to accept deliveries from ‘people we don’t want.’ The customer said he would be raising the issue with his lawyers.

Zomato India Twitter account replied that ‘Food doesn’t have a religion. It is a religion.’  Zomato Founder, Deepinder Goyal, reiterated his company’s stance with a tweet: “We are proud of the idea of India – and the diversity of our esteemed customers and partners. We aren’t sorry to lose any business that comes in the way of our values.”

The incident comes at a time of increasing religious tensions in India. Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, won another landslide victory in general elections that concluded in May, and minorities and liberals have grown increasingly concerned about the influence of his Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party.

American food delivery rival Uber Eats also supported Zomato’s decision.
‘We stand by you,’ said Uber Eats from its India account. The move angered some Indian Twitter users who said they had uninstalled both apps over what they claimed was unfair discrimination against Hindus. The hashtag #BoycottUberEats was trending in India with several users also using #BoycottZomato.

Zomato was founded in 2008 and quickly expanded across Asia, Europe and South America. The company bought Urbanspoon in 2015 to gain access to the US and Australia. In June, Zomato announced that it would give six months of paid leave to all new parents among its 5,000 corporate employees worldwide.

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