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Meituan food courier delivers deadly service over spat with supermarket staff

The company denied the cause of the tragedy was related to negative reviews.

Photo:Shutterstock.com

China’s Meituan, the country’s largest on-demand service provider, confirmed Monday that one of its delivery men stabbed a supermarket employee over quarrel in Wuhan city over the weekend.

The police in Hongshan district of Wuhan, the capital city of China’s central Hubei province, disclosed on Sunday evening that a man was killed by a Meituan courier around 2 p.m. in a supermarket located in a shopping mall. The 32-year-old delivery man was arrested by police later on.

Online discussion about the kill went rival on Weibo, the Chinese equivalent for Twitter since last weekend. While some empathized with the delivery man, pointing out the pressure and strenuousness entailed in their work, the others didn’t think this justifies the killing and held the company’s rigid policies accountable for the tragedy.

The company said it had already sent an investigation team to further cooperate with the police and deal with possible follow-up issues. It promised to take responsibility by looking for further issues and making improvements regarding safety.

Meituan also dismissed the online rumor that the tragedy was ignited by a negative review given to the delivery man. Instead, it said in the announcement that during the police’s investigation, no information regarding negative reviews or complaints was found in the record of both the merchant and the customer.

This is not the first time that personal safety issues regarding on-demand services have been widely concerned. China’s largest ride-hailing platform Didi Chuxing was in bad shape after it was linked to two rape and murders within three months back in 2018, both of which were committed by its car-pooling drivers. The company has shifted its focus to enhancing passenger safety on multiple fronts ever since criminal cases.

KrASIA will continue to follow up with this incident and update the article with the latest developments.