An automobile dealer and his insurer have been asked by Thane Motor Accident Claims Tribunal to pay Rs 44.74 lakh to a woman and her two children for the death of her husband in a road accident in 2013.
MACT Chairman and Principal District Judge S M Gavhane directed M/s Asset Auto Pvt Ltd, Dimapur, Nagaland (as the offending car was registered in Nagaland), owned by Parvinder Singh, and Bharti AXA General Insurance Company to jointly and severally make the payment to the claimants with 9 per cent interest from May 2013.
On March 2, 2013, Gorakh Jadhav (aged aroud 55) was walking on a road at Nerul in Navi Mumbai when the opponent’s BMW hit him. Jadhav sustained serious injuries and died on way to hospital.
An offence of rash and negligent driving was registered against the vehicle driver with Nerul police, said the claimants — Jadhav’s widow Sharda Gorakh Jadhav (49), and children Anil Gorakh Jadhav (25) and Arpana Gorakh Jadhav (23) — in their application before the MACT.
The claimants’ advocate, G A Vinod, informed the MACT that Jadhav was working with the BEST as an office assistant and drawing monthly salary of around Rs 50,000.
They sought a compensation of Rs 53.55 lakh along with 18 per cent interest from the two respondents.
However, the respondents contended that the deceased’s two children were major and cannot be said to be dependent on him. The deceased himself was negligent in crossing the road and dashed against the offending car. Therefore, the applicants are not entitled to compensation, they said.
The interest rate of 18 per cent as claimed was highly excessive and would not be more than 6 per cent, they said.
The judge noted that though it is a case of both the opponents that the accident took place due to negligence of the deceased and there was no negligence of driver of the offending car, they have adduced no evidence to substantiate this contention. They have also not examined the offending car’s drive, as he was the best witness to state that there was no negligence on his part.
Therefore, an adverse inference can be drawn against both the opponents that the accident took place due to rash and negligent driving of the car driver, and that there was no negligence of the deceased, the judge observed recently.
Hence, he awarded a compensation of Rs 44,74,928, which includes loss of dependency, consortium and funeral expenses, to the claimants.
(Source : PTI)