Over 40% cab drivers, delivery persons face violence at work: Survey

Source : PTI | New Delhi, Nearly 47% cab drivers and 41.5% delivery persons face some form of violence at work with a majority of the latter demanding the 10 minutes delivery policy be discontinued, a survey report has revealed. Several companies offer discount and provide the order for free if the delivery is not made within 10 minutes of placing the order.

In an incident in October last year, a pizza delivery man in Pune, Maharashtra, was assaulted and threatened by firing in the air by an angry customer due to late arrival of the pizza at his doorstep.

“According to the data, 41.5% of the delivery persons reported that they have faced some kind of violence at work. 64% do not get support from companies when faced with violence,” the findings of the survey report claimed.

According to the survey by a Delhi-based NGO, PAIGAM, 41.5% of the delivery persons reported that they have faced violence at work.

Akriti Bhatia, a research director, said, “Gig and app-based workers should be treated as employees and the companies should ensure that drivers get a minimum wage.”

Chief Coordinator Deepak Indolia said, “In most residential apartments, the workers and delivery personnel are not allowed to use elevators used by the residents. The same applies to the entry gate as well.”

He added that such behaviour should be acknowledged.

The report recommends mandatory registration for all app-based delivery persons in government records, emphasizing the need to stop discrimination against delivery persons in public spaces, revisit terminology for a broader understanding and allow them to use residential elevators.

The survey studied responses from a sample size of more than 10,000 gig and app-based drivers (5308) and delivery workers (5028) between April 2022 and 2023 across eight states, including Delhi, Lucknow, Jaipur, Indore, Mumbai, Kolkata, Hyderabad, and Bangalore.

The survey highlights the challenges faced by app-based drivers and gig workers, who are grappling with lack of employment benefits, job insecurity, legal protection concerns, income instability, violence and discrimination.

As per the survey, 72% of the gig workers find it difficult to manage their expenses with a substantial percentage earning below INR 15,000 per month.

A ‘gig employee’ is described as someone who engages in income-earning activities out of the doors of a traditional organisation-employee relationship, often working in the casual sector, according to a report presented by the Ministry of Labour and Employment in 2020.

“83% of cab drivers work over 10 hours a day, with a staggering 31% exceeding 14 hours daily. Still, 72% of workers find it difficult to manage expenses and a substantial percentage earns below INR 15,000 per month,” the survey said.

The long working hours adversely impact the health of these workers with about 93.3% of the cab drivers complaining that they face physical pain, including joint pain and backache, and 98.5% delivery persons said they experience anxiety, depression, stress and irritability.

Additionally, customer behaviour negatively impacts 68% of delivery persons, it said.