Harry, Meghan were ‘pretty nervous’, says Indian-American cab driver
Sukhcharn Singh said he instantly recognised his passengers
FILE PHOTO: Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, her mother, Doria Ragland and Prince Harry take part in the launch of a cookbook with recipes from a group of women affected by the Grenfell Tower fire at Kensington Palace in London, Britain September 20, 2018. Ben Stansall/Pool via Reuters
Prince Harry and his wife Meghan were “pretty nervous” as they were chased by paparazzi in New York, according to an Indian-American cab driver who drove the couple for about 10 minutes after picking them up at a police station in Manhattan.
Sukhcharn Singh, the driver of the couple briefly on Tuesday (16) night as they were trailed in their car by photographers, said he instantly recognised his passengers.
“I was on 67th Street and then the security guard hailed me. Next thing you know, Prince Harry and his wife were hopping into my cab,” he said.
“We got blocked by a garbage truck, and all of a sudden paparazzi came and started taking pictures,” he said.
Singh said Harry, 38, and Meghan, 41, were about to give him their location but told him to go back to the police station.
“They were nice people, they looked nervous. I think they were being chased the whole day or something. They were pretty nervous,” Singh told Sky News.
In a statement, Harry and Meghan’s spokesperson said on Wednesday (17) the couple had experienced a “near catastrophic car chase” on Tuesday.
The New York Police Department (NYPD) later said they assisted the private security team protecting the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.
“There were numerous photographers that made their transport challenging,” it said.
The police, however, said the couple “arrived at their destination and there were no reported collisions, summonses, injuries, or arrests.”
Harry and Meghan were in New York attending an awards ceremony, the Ms Foundation Women of Vision Awards, along with Meghan’s mother Doria Ragland.
When they were chased after leaving the event, the spokesperson said, the couple tried to avoid the paparazzi by going to a Manhattan police station – which is where Singh picked them up.
Singh laughed when asked if it was a “near catastrophic car chase”.
“I don’t think that’s true, it’s exaggerated. Don’t read too much into that,” he said.
When asked if he felt he or his passengers were in danger, he said, “No, New York City is the safest place to be”, adding that there are police personnel on every corner.
“So, there is no need to be afraid in New York,” he added.
According to a report in The Washington Post, Singh picked up Harry, Meghan, her mother and a security guard around 11pm on Tuesday outside the New York City Police Department’s 19th precinct.
The report quoted him as saying that he drove them for a brief period, during which they were pursued by other vehicles.
Singh said they were pursued by two vehicles-a black Honda Accord and an older gray Honda CR-V.
“They kept following us and were coming next to the car. They took pictures as we stopped and were filming us,” he said.
Singh said the security guard was concerned about the photographers and asked him to return to the police station.
The guard thought they were too exposed and didn’t want their location shared more widely, he said.
New York city mayor Eric Adams has described the incident as ‘reckless and irresponsible’.
Harry’s mother Princess Diana and her partner Dodi Fayed were being chased relentlessly by paparazzi and died when their car crashed in an underpass in Paris in August 1997.