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claims tribunal

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M.V. ACT – INSURANCE CLAIMS = THE POSITION OF VEHICLES AT THE SCENE OF ACCIDENT AND THE CONTENT OF viscera WITH ALCOHOL ALONG WITH FOOD ON DECEASED STOMACH AT THE TIME OF ACCIDENT NEVER SUGGEST CONTRIBUTORY NEGLIGENCE, WHEN CHARGE SHEET WAS FILED AGAINST THE ACCUSED DUE TO RASH AND NEGLIGENCE ACCIDENT WAS OCCURRED = the police submitted a charge­ sheet (Ext.­A4) against the bus driver under Section 279, 337 and 304A IPC with specific allegation that the bus driver caused the death of Joy Kuruvila due to rash and negligent driving of the bus on 16th April, 1990 at 4.50P.M.- The mere position of the vehicles after accident, as shown in a Scene Mahazar, cannot give a substantial proof as to the rash and negligent driving on the part of one or the other. When two vehicles coming from opposite directions collide, the position of the vehicles and its direction etc. depends on number of factors like speed of vehicles, intensity of collision, reason for collision, place at which one vehicle hit the other, etc. From the scene of the accident, one may suggest or presume the manner in which the accident caused, but in absence of any direct or corroborative evidence, no conclusion can be drawn as to whether there was negligence on the part of the driver. In absence of such direct or corroborative evidence, the Court cannot give any specific finding about negligence on the part of any individual. 25. Post Mortem report, Ext.­A5 shows the condition of the deceased at the time of death. The said report reflects that the deceased had already taken meal as his stomach was half full and contained rice, vegetables and meat pieces in a fluid with strong smell of spirit. 26. The aforesaid evidence, Ext.­A5 clearly suggests that the deceased had taken liquor but on the basis of the same, no definite finding can be given that the deceased was driving the car rashly and negligently at the time of accident. The mere suspicion based on Ext.­B2, ‘Scene Mahazar’ and the Ext.­A5, post mortem report cannot take the place of evidence, particularly, when the direct evidence like PW.3, independent eye­witness, , Ext.­A1(FIR), Ext.­A4(charge­sheet) and Ext.­B1( F.I. statement) are on record. In view of the aforesaid, we, therefore, hold that the Tribunal and the High Court erred in concluding that the said accident occurred due to the negligence on the part of the deceased as well, as the said conclusion was not based on evidence but based on mere presumption and surmises. ; The deceased was 45 years of age, therefore, as per decision in Sarla Verma & Ors. V. Delhi Transport Corporation & Anr., (2009) 6 SCC 121, multiplier of 14 shall be applicable. But the High Court and the Tribunal wrongly held that the multiplier of 15 will be applicable. Thus, by applying the multiplier of 14, the amount of compensation will be Rs.5,19,000 x 14 = Rs.72,66,000/­. The family of the deceased consisted of 5 persons i.e. deceased himself, wife, two children and his mother. As per the decision of this Court in Sarla Verma (supra) there being four dependents at the time of death, 1/4th of the total income to be deducted towards personal and living expenses of the deceased. The High Court has also noticed that out of 2,500 US Dollars, the deceased used to spend 500 US Dollars i.e. 1/5th of his income. Therefore, if 1/4th of the total income i.e. Rs. 18,16,500/­ is deducted towards personal and living expenses of the deceased, the contribution to the family will be (Rs. 72,66,000 – Rs. 18,16,500/­ =) Rs.54,49,500/­. Besides the aforesaid compensation, the claimants are entitled to get Rs.1,00,000/­ each towards love and affection of the two children i.e. Rs.2,00,000/­and a sum of Rs.1,00,000/­ towards loss of consortium to wife which seems to be reasonable. Therefore, the total amount comes to Rs.57,49,500/­. The claimants are entitled to get the said amount of compensation alongwith interest @ 12% from the date of filing of the petition till the date of realisation, leaving rest of the conditions as mentioned in the award intact. We, accordingly, allow the appeals filed by the claimants and partly allow the appeals preferred by the Insurance Company, so far as it relates to the application of the multiplier is concerned. The impugned judgment dated 12th April, 2007 passed by the Division Bench of the Kerala High Court in M.F.A. Nos.1162 and 1298 of 2001 and the award passed by the Tribunal are modified to the extent above.

published in http://judis.nic.in/supremecourt/imgs1.aspx?filename=40491 Page 1 REPORTABLE IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION CIVIL APPEAL NOs. 4945­4946 OF 2013 (arising out of SLP(C)Nos.20557­20558 of 2007) JIJU KURUVILA & ORS. … APPELLANTS Versus KUNJUJAMMA MOHAN & ORS.     … RESPONDENTS WITH CIVIL APPEAL NO.  4947    OF 2013 (arising out of SLP(C)No.16078 of 2008) THE ORIENTAL INSURANCE CO. LTD. … APPELLANT Versus SMT. CHINNAMMA JOY AND ORS.     … RESPONDENTS CIVIL APPEAL NO.  4948  OF 2013 (arising out of SLP(C)No.15992 of 2008) ORIENTAL INSURANCE CO. LTD. … APPELLANT Versus SMT. CHINNAMMA JOY AND ORS.     … RESPONDENTS J U D G M E N T SUDHANSU JYOTI MUKHOPADHAYA, J. Delay condoned. Leave granted. 1Page 2 2. These   appeals   are   directed   against   the judgment of the Division Bench of the Kerala High Court  dated 12th  April, 2007 in M.F.A. Nos. 1162 and 1298 of 2001(D)  whereby compensation awarded to   the   claimants   by … Continue reading

M.V. ACT = whether compensation in a motor vehicle accident case is payable to a claimant for both heads, viz., loss of earning/earning capacity as well as permanent disability. = The Tribunal, after holding that the accident was caused due to the negligence of the driver of the bus belonging to the Transport Corporation, by order dated 30.11.2000, awarded a sum of Rs. 9,42,822/- as total compensation by adopting the multiplier of 13 in terms of the second schedule to the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 (hereinafter referred to as “the Act”). (c) Dis-satisfied with the award of the Tribunal, the appellant preferred an appeal being CMA No. 150 of 2001 before the High Court praying for higher compensation, on the other hand, the Transport Corporation also preferred an appeal being CMA No. 82 of 2001 for reduction of the compensation. (d) The High Court, by impugned common judgment dated 29.01.2007, reduced the compensation from Rs. 9,42,822/- to Rs. 6,72,822/-. Aggrieved by the reduction in the compensation amount, the appellant has preferred the present appeals by way of special leave for enhancement of the compensation. = In the light of the above discussion, the appellant is entitled to the following additional amount: a) Towards 85% permanent disability … Rs. 1,00,000/- b) Towards loss of earning/earning capacity by applying the multiplier 13 … Rs. 80,000/- (in addition to the amount of Rs. 3,20,000/- fixed by the High Court) Accordingly, in addition to the amount awarded by the High Court, the claimant/the appellant herein is entitled to an additional amount of Rs. 1,80,000/-. Further, we make it clear that altogether the appellant is entitled to a total compensation of Rs. 8,52,822/- with interest at the rate of 9% from the date of claim petition till the date of deposit. 19) The appeals filed by the claimant/appellant are allowed in part to the extent mentioned above with no order as to costs.

published in http://judis.nic.in/supremecourt/imgs1.aspx?filename=40482 Page 1 REPORTABLE IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION CIVIL APPEAL NOS. 4816-4817 OF 2013 (Arising out of SLP (C) Nos. 15531-15532 of 2007) S. Manickam …. Appellant (s) Versus Metropolitan Transport Corp. Ltd. …. Respondent(s) J U D G M E N T P. Sathasivam, J. 1) Leave granted. 2) … Continue reading

when the parties are capable to handle their compensation amount and when they are in dire need of the compensation amount, entire amount should be released with out insisting for fixed deposites==It was pointed out that if the money was locked up in a nationalised bank, only the bank would be benefited by the deposit as they give a paltry interest which could not be equated to the costs of materials which were ever increasing. It was further stated that the delay in payment of compensation amount exposed the appellants to serious prejudice and economic ruin.=The prayer in the application of the appellants for release of the 8 amount invested in long term deposits stands allowed. The entire amount of compensation shall be withdrawn and paid to the appellants without any further delay.

REPORTABLE IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION CIVIL APPEAL NO. 1095 OF 2012 [arising out of SLP (C) No. 22521 of 2008]   A.V. Padma & Ors. … Appellants Versus   R. Venugopal & Ors. … Respondents     J U D G M E N T   CYRIAC JOSEPH, J.   … Continue reading

HOW TO FIX DISABILITY PERCENTAGE =In the context of loss of future earning, any physical disability resulting from an accident has to be judged with reference to the nature of work being performed by the person suffering the disability. This is the basic premise and once that is grasped, it clearly follows that the same injury or loss may affect two different persons in different ways. Take the case of a marginal farmer who does his cultivation work himself and ploughs his land with his own two hands; or the puller of a cycle-rickshaw, one of the main means of transport in hundreds of small towns all over the country. The loss of one of the legs either to the marginal farmer or the cycle-rickshaw-puller would be the end of the road insofar as their earning capacity is concerned. But in case of a person engaged in some kind of desk work in an office, the loss of a leg may not have the same effect. The loss of a leg (or for that matter the loss of any limb) to anyone is bound to have very traumatic effects on one’s personal, family or social life but the loss of one of the legs to a person working in the office would not interfere with his work/earning capacity in the same degree as in the case of a marginal farmer or a cycle-rickshaw-puller.

  REPORTABLE IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION CIVIL APPEAL NO. 237 OF 2012 [ARISING OUT OF SLP (CIVIL) NO.9850 OF 2010] MOHAN SONI … APPELLANT VERSUS RAM AVTAR TOMAR AND ORS. … RESPONDENTS   J U D G M E N T   Aftab Alam, J.   1. Leave granted. 2. … Continue reading

Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 – ss. 163A, 166, 168 and 169 – Motor accident – Claim for compensation u/s. 163-A – For the death of owner of the vehicle – Maintainability of the petition questioned – Tribunal holding that petition was maintainable – High Court holding the same as not maintainable – On appeal, held: The claims tribunal in a claim petition, is required to decide all the issues in one go and not in piecemeal – The question of maintainability is connected with the liability of the Insurance Company – Therefore, the matter is sent back to claims tribunal to decide all the issues together. Owner of the insured vehicle died in a road accident while he was driving the vehicle. His dependants filed petition u/s. 163-A of Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 claiming compensation. The Insurance Company questioned the maintainability of the petition stating that it was liable to compensation only for third party and not to the owner. The tribunal held that the petition was maintainable. High Court, in revision, held that it was not maintainable. In the instant appeal, appellants contended that additional premium was paid to cover the risk of the driver of the vehicle and in the policy, persons or classes of persons entitled to drive included the insured and thus the insurance company was liable. =Partly allowing the appeal, the Court HELD: 1.1 The whole object of summary procedure required to be followed by the Claims Tribunal, is to ensure that claim application is heard and decided by the Claims Tribunal expeditiously. The inquiry u/s. 168 and the summary procedure do not contemplate the controversy arising out of claim application being decided in piecemeal. The Claims Tribunal is required to dispose of all issues one way or the other in one go while deciding the claim application. [Para 5] 1.2 The objection raised by the Insurance Company about maintainability of claim petition is intricately connected with its liability which in the facts and circumstances of the case, is dependent on determination of the effect of the additional premium paid by the insured to cover the risk of the driver and other terms of the policy including terms of the policy. Since all issues (points for determination) are required to be considered by the Claims Tribunal together in the light of the evidence that may be led in by the parties and not in piecemeal, it is not proper to consider the rival contentions on merits at this stage. The matter is sent back to the Claims Tribunal. [Para 5] CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION : Civil Appeal No. 2164 of 2004. From the Judgment & Order dated 01.10.2002 of the High Court of Punjab & Haryana at Chandigarh in Civil Revision No. 5952 of 2001. B.K. Satija for the Appellants. Manish Singhvi, P.V. Yogeswaran, Jaswant Perraya for the Respondent.

REPORTABLE IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION CIVIL APPEAL NO. 2164 OF 2004 Bimlesh and Ors. …Appellants Versus New India Assurance Co. Ltd. …Respondent JUDGMENT R.M. Lodha, J. The claimants are in appeal by special leave aggrieved by the judgment and order dated October 1, 2002 of the High Court for the … Continue reading

MOTOR ACCIDENT CLAIMS=It is true that in the petition filed by him under Section 166 of the Act, the appellant had claimed compensation of Rs. 4,20,000/- only, but as held in Nagappa vs. Gurudayal Singh (2003) 2 SCC 274, in the absence of any bar in the Act, the Tribunal and for that reason any competent Court is entitled to award higher compensation to the victim of an accident. 18. In the result, the appeal is allowed. The impugned judgment is modified and it is declared that the appellant shall be entitled to total compensation of Rs.5,62,000/-. He shall also be entitled to interest @ 9% per annum from the date of filing the claim petition till realization. Respondent No.3 is directed to pay the enhanced amount of compensation to the appellant with interest @ 9% within a =The heads under which compensation is awarded in personal injury cases are the following: Pecuniary damages (Special damages) (i) Expenses relating to treatment, hospitalisation, medicines, transportation, nourishing food, and miscellaneous expenditure. (ii) Loss of earnings (and other gains) which the injured would have made had he not been injured, comprising: (a) Loss of earning during the period of treatment; (b) Loss of future earnings on account of permanent disability. (iii) Future medical expenses. Non-pecuniary damages (General damages) (iv) Damages for pain, suffering and trauma as a consequence of the injuries. (v) Loss of amenities (and/or loss of prospects of marriage). (vi) Loss of expectation of life (shortening of normal longevity). In routine personal injury cases, compensation will be awarded only under heads (i), (ii)(a) and (iv). It is only in serious cases of injury, where there is specific medical evidence corroborating the evidence of the claimant, that compensation will be granted under any of the heads (ii)(b), (iii), (v) and (vi) relating to loss of future earnings on account of permanent disability, future medical expenses, loss of amenities (and/or loss of prospects of marriage) and loss of expectation of life. Assessment of pecuniary damages under Item (i) and under Item (ii) (a) do not pose much difficulty as they involve reimbursement of actuals and are easily ascertainable from the evidence. Award under the head of future medical expenses–Item (iii)–depends upon specific medical evidence regarding need for further treatment and cost thereof. Assessment of non-pecuniary damages–Items (iv), (v) and (vi)–involves determination of lump sum amounts with reference to circumstances such as age, nature of injury/deprivation/disability suffered by the claimant and the effect thereof on the future life of the claimant. Decisions of this Court and the High Courts contain

Non-reportable IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION CIVIL APPEAL No. 9013 OF 2011 (Arising out of S.L.P. (C) No. 8983 of 2010) Sanjay Batham …….Appellant Versus Munnalal Parihar and others …….Respondents J U D G M E N T G. S. Singhvi, J. 1. Leave granted. 2. Feeling dissatisfied with the enhancement … Continue reading

exceeding the claim, more amount can be granted in suitable case.= amendments can also be permitted =under the MV Act, there is no restriction that the Tribunal/court cannot award compensation amount exceeding the claimed amount. The function of the Tribunal/court is to award “just” compensation which is reasonable on the basis of evidence produced on record. Further, in such cases there is no question of claim becoming time-barred or it cannot be contended that by enhancing the claim there would be change of cause of action. It is also to be stated that as provided under sub-section (4) to Section 166, even the report submitted to the Claims Tribunal under sub-section (6) of Section 158 can be treated as an application for compensation under the MV Act. If required, in appropriate cases, the court may permit amendment to the claim petition.”

NON-REPORTABLE IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION CIVIL APPEAL No.8943 OF 2011 (Arising out of S.L.P. (C) No.25372 of 2005) Ibrahim …….Appellant Versus Raju and others …….Respondents J U D G M E N T G.S. Singhvi, J. 1. Delay condoned. 2. Leave granted. 3. Feeling dissatisfied with the enhancement granted by … Continue reading

Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 – ss. 140 and 166 – No fault compensation – Fatal accident – Death of driver and four occupants, of a private car – Surviving occupant sustained serious injuries – While rejection of claim petition, prayer for no fault compensation also rejected Held: Liability arising from s. 140 would almost invariably be passed on to insurer to be paid off from the vast fund created by virtue of ss. 146 and 147 unless owner of the vehicle causing accident is guilty of some flagrant violation of the law – In case of death or permanent disablement of any person resulting from motor, accident, a minimum amount must be paid to the injured or heirs of deceased, independently of the compensation on the principle of fault – Thus, claimants entitled to no-fault compensation u/s. 140 – Insurance company directed to pay Rs.25,000/- along with simple interest @ 6% p.a. A privately owned car met with a fatal accident resulting in the death of the driver and the four occupants. The fifth passenger sustained injuries. The heirs and legal representatives of the driver filed a claim for compensation under the Workmen’s Compensation Act, 1923 and the same was rejected holding that the accident did not take place in the course of employment. The heirs and legal representatives of the four occupants and the fifth passenger sought compensation before the Motor Accidents Claims Tribunal and the same was also rejected. The tribunal also rejected the express prayer made on behalf of the appellants and other claimants for grant of the `no fault compensation’ as provided under section 140 of the Act. The High Court dismissed the appeal by a brief order. Therefore, the appellants filed the instant appeal. =Allowing the appeal, the Court HELD: 1.1 The reasons assigned for denying the appellants the `no fault compensation’ as provided under section 140 of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 by the tribunal cannot be accepted. The tribunal was gravely in error in taking the view that a claim for compensation under section 140 of the Act can succeed only in case it is raised at the initial stage of the proceedings and further that the claim must fail if the accident had taken place by using the car without the consent or knowledge of its owner. All that is required to attract the liability under section 140 is an accident arising out of the use of a motor vehicles(s) leading to the death or permanent disablement of any person. [Para 12] [370-F-H; 371-B] 1.2 Chapter X of the Act deals with “Liability without fault” and contains ss. 140 to 144. Seen in isolation, these provisions might appear harsh, unreasonable and arbitrary in as much as these create the liability of the vehicle(s) owner(s) even where the accident did not take place due to any wrongful act, neglect or default of the owner or owners of the vehicle or vehicles concerned but entirely due to the wrongful act, neglect or default of the person in respect of whose death or permanent disablement the claim has been made, but the said provisions must be seen along with certain provisions of Chapter XI. Section 146 forbids the use of the vehicle in a public place unless there is in force, in relation to the use of the vehicle, a policy of insurance complying with the provisions of that chapter. Section 147 contains the provisions that are commonly referred to as `Act only insurance’. The provisions of sections 146 and 147 are meant to create the large pool of money for making payments of no fault compensation. Thus, the liability arising from section 140 would almost invariably be passed on to the insurer to be paid off from the vast fund created by virtue of sections 146 and 147 of the Act unless the owner of the vehicle causing accident is guilty of some flagrant violation of the law. Thus, the provisions of chapter X together with sections 146 and 147 would appear to be in furtherance of the public policy that in case of death or permanent disablement of any person resulting from a motor accident a minimum amount must be paid to the injured or the heirs of the deceased, as the case may be, without any questions being asked and independently of the compensation on the principle of fault. [Paras 15 and 16] [374-G-H; 375-A-D] 1.3 The provisions of section 140 are indeed intended to provide immediate succor to the injured or the heirs and legal representatives of the deceased. Hence, normally a claim under section 140 is made at the threshold of the proceeding and the payment of compensation under section 140 is directed to be made by an interim award of the tribunal which may be adjusted if in the final award the claimants are held entitled to any larger amounts. But that does not mean, that in case a claim under section 140 was not made at the beginning of the proceedings due to the ignorance of the claimant or no direction to make payment of the compensation under section 140 was issued due to the over-sight of the tribunal, the door would be permanently closed. Such a view would be contrary to the legal provisions and would be opposed to the public policy. [Para 17] [375-E-G] 1.4 The tribunal was completely wrong in denying to the appellants, the compensation in terms of section 140 of the Act. The appellants (as well as the other 3 claimants) were fully entitled to no fault compensation under section 140 of the Act. The insurance company is directed to pay to the appellant Rs.25,000/- along with simple interest @ 6% p.a. from the date of the order of the tribunal till the date of payment. The other 3 claimants are not before this Court, but that is presumably because they are too poor to come to this Court. Since, the claim of the appellants is allowed, the said order should be extended to the other three claimants as well. The insurance company is directed to make the payment. [Para 18] [375-H; 376-A- C] CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION : Civil Appeal No. 7049 of 2002. From the Judgment & Order dated 12.03.2001 of the High Court of Karnataka at Bangalore in M.F.A. No. 3442 of 1996. G.V. Chandrashekhar (for P.P. Singh) for the Appellants. Manjeet Chawla, Vishnu Mehra (for B.K. Satija), Naresh Kaushik, Sanjeev K. Bhardwaj (for Lalitha Kaushik) for the Respondents.

REPORTABLE IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION CIVIL APPEAL NO. 7049 OF 2002 Eshwarappa @ Maheshwarappa and Anr. Appellants Versus C. S. Gurushanthappa and Anr. Respondents JUDGMENT AFTAB ALAM,J. 1. A certain Basavaraj was the driver of a privately owned car. In the night of October 28, 1992 he took out the … Continue reading

motor accident case – contributory negligence -while driving the motor vehicle on the fateful day, met with an accident not because of the fault of the owner of the vehicle or because of the fault of the other vehicle, but because of the oil spill on the road. Therefore, the negligence can be attributable only on the person who was driving the vehicle and hence, is not entitled to compensation under the Insurance Policy. Therefore, the High Court was justified in invoking the beneficial legislation and in directing the Insurance Company to pay limited amount by way of compensation to the injured person of an accident arising out of the use of a motor cycle on the basis of “no fault liability,” since the accident has arisen 3

REPORTABLE IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION CIVIL APPEAL NO..7823 OF 2011 (Arising out of SLP (C) No. 6617 of 2011) A. Sridhar ………….. Appellant versus United India Insurance Co. Ltd. & Anr. …………..Respondents J U D G M E N T H.L. DATTU, J. 1. Leave granted. 2. This appeal is … Continue reading

Shri Shivlal Verma (husband of appellant No.1, father of appellant Nos. 2 and 3 and son of Shri Swaminath and Smt. Tulsi Devi) died in an -MULTIPLIER IS 17

IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6480 OF 2011 (Arising out of SLP(C) No. 951 of 2010) Urmila and others … Appellants Versus Rashpal Kaur and others … Respondents J U D G M E N T G.S. Singhvi, J. 1. Leave granted. 2. Feeling dissatisfied with the enhancement … Continue reading

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