Jammu & Kashmir State Road … vs Mohd. Rafiq & Others on 25 February, 2010

Jammu High Court
Jammu & Kashmir State Road … vs Mohd. Rafiq & Others on 25 February, 2010




CIMA No. 190 OF 2005   
Jammu & Kashmir State Road Transport Corporation.  
Farid Hussain and Ors 
!Mr. R.Koul, Advocate
^Mr. K.J.Singh, Advocate for respondent nos. 1 & 2. Respondent no.3 ex-parte

Honble Mr. Justice Mansoor Ahmad Mir  
Date: 25.02.2010 
:J U D G M E N T :

Appellant has challenged award dated 10th November, 2003 passed by the Motor Accidents
Claims Tribunal (MACT), Udhampur in Claim Petition no. 63/Claim, titled Farid Hussain &
another versus Mohd. Rafiq & Others, on the grounds taken in the memo of appeal.
Respondent nos. 1 & 2, being the victim of the vehicular accident, filed a claim petition before
the Motor Accidents Claims Tribunal, Udhampur for grant of compensation on the ground that
their father namely Abdul Majid, who was traveling in the vehicle/goods carrier truck bearing
no. 336/JKZ, which was being driven by Mohd. Rafiq, driver, rashly and negligently met with
an accident near Marothi on Sudh Mahadev Dudu Road on 21.01.1988 and lost his life in the
said accident.

Respondents have filed their objections.

Following issues came to be framed:

1. Whether on 21.1.88 Vehicle no. 336/JKZ driven by respondent no.1 under the
employment of respondent nos. 2 & 3 rashly and negligently met with an accident near Marothi
on Sudh Mahadev Dudu Road in consequence of which Ab. Majid who has also travelling in
the ill fated vehicle along with others sustained grievous injuries and died on spot?

Whether the monthly income of the deceased was Rs.3000/- at the time of his death, if so what
is its effect on the petitioner?

Whether the deceased was travelling as a gratuitous passenger in the offending vehicle as such
respondent no.3 is not entitled to pay any amount to the deceased?


Claimants/respondents have examined the witnesses including driver Mohd. Rafiq.
Virtually the appellant had admitted that deceased was travelling in the truck. He died because
the truck met with an accident and cause of the accident was heavy rain.

It also appears that batch of claim petitions came to be filed and the Tribunal recorded
the findings that the accident was outcome of rash and negligent driving of the driver.

In the given circumstances, the Tribunal has rightly recorded the findings in favour of
the claimants and against the appellant.

While going through the memo of appeal, the appellant has questioned the award only
on two grounds viz; (1) that the claim petition was admittedly time barred, (2) that
compensation awarded is excessive.

The learned counsel argued that the award is not justified on the said two grounds.
Admittedly, the deceased was a labourer and was also working as RajMistri. He was
earning Rs.100/ – per day.

Appellant has not led any evidence in rebuttal. Thus, it can safely be held that he was
earning Rs.3000/- per month as labourer/daily wager. It is but natural that he would have been
spending 1/3rd for his personal expenses and rightly the Tribunal had assessed loss of
dependency to the tune of Rs.2000/- per month. Admittedly, age of the deceased was 39 years
at the time of death and the multiplier Sixteen as per Second Schedule of the Motor Vehicles
Act is applicable, but the Tribunal has applied multiplier of Ten, but unfortunately
claimants/respondent Nos. 1 & 2 have neither questioned the award to that extent by way of
appeal nor by a cross objection. Reluctantly, the multiplier Ten applied by the Tribunal is

Learned counsel for the appellant lastly argued that the claim petition was to be dismissed on
the count that it was barred by time. I am of the view that argument of the learned counsel for
the appellant is not tenable for the following reasons:-

The Motor Vehicle Act has gone thorough a sea change and the provision, whereunder
the time frame was fixed, came to be deleted by the amendment and now in terms of the
amendment, a claim petition can be filed at any time. Limitation will not come in the way of
the claimants for seeking benefit of this social legislation.

Apex Court in cases titled New India Assurance Co. Ltd. versus C. Padma & anr.,
reported as AIR 2003, SC, 4394, Dhannalal versus D.P.Vijayvargiya & Ors., reported as AIR
1996 SC, 2155 and Vinod Gurudas Raikar versus National Insurance Co. Ltd., AIR 1991 SC
2156, laid-down the same law.

It is also apt to mention here in that the appellant has not taken this issue before the
Tribunal in objections/reply nor by way of any other mode. Thus the appellant cannot raise this
issue now.

In the given circumstances, this appeal is, accordingly, dismissed, along with all CMPs.

(Mansoor Ahmad Mir)


Pawan Chopra

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