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Tribunal awards over 2 crore as compensation for govt employee’s death in Road Accident

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Motor Accident Vehicle Law Insider

LI Network

Published on: 22 May 2023 at 11:25 IST

A local court has ruled that the National Insurance Company Limited must provide compensation exceeding Rs 2 crore to the surviving dependents of a government employee who passed away in a 2019 traffic accident.

The presiding officer of the Motor Accident Claims Tribunal, Ekta Gauba Mann, reviewed the case brought forth by the deceased employee’s family members.

According to the prosecution’s account, the victim, Manish Gautam, aged 39, was walking on a road in Sector 11, Rohini, on May 31, 2019, accompanied by a relative. At that time, Mange Ram, driving a car recklessly and negligently, struck Gautam, resulting in his demise following medical treatment at a hospital on June 1.

The judge, in an order issued on May 19, stated that the insurance company must pay Rs 2,00,50,000 as compensation to the petitioners within 30 days from the date of the order. Failure to comply would result in additional interest being charged. The judge also mentioned that any interim amount already paid to the petitioners should be deducted from the compensation amount.

The judge dismissed the insurance company’s argument of contributory negligence on the part of the victim, stating that there was no evidence to support such a claim.

The judge concluded that it was established that the accident occurred due to the reckless and negligent driving of the offending vehicle by Mange Ram (respondent no. 1), and the victim suffered fatal injuries as a result.

Furthermore, the judge emphasized that only the widow, son, two daughters, and mother of the victim were eligible for compensation as they were dependent on the deceased.

Additionally, the judge dismissed the insurance company’s claim that there was a violation of insurance conditions due to Mange Ram driving the car while under the influence of alcohol.

Citing the forensic science laboratory (FSL) report, which stated that no alcohol was detected, the judge stated that there was no evidence presented to indicate a breach of any terms and conditions of the insurance policy pertaining to the offending vehicle.

The judge further stated that regardless of the strength of the allegations presented in the written statement, they cannot substitute for concrete proof. Moreover, the insurance company failed to provide any substantial evidence regarding the matter, despite raising the issue. Therefore, due to the insurance company’s failure to establish any legal defense, it is obligated to provide indemnification to the owner or insured party and compensate the petitioners,” the judge affirmed.

It was mentioned that the Shahbad Dairy police station had filed a First Information Report (FIR) against Ram under sections 279 (rash driving on a public way) and 304 A (causing death by negligence) of the Indian Penal Code.