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The Moga Transport Company Pvt. Ltd. Vs. Krishan Kumar Goel and ors. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectInsurance;Motor Vehicles
CourtPunjab and Haryana High Court
Decided On
Judge
Reported in2(1985)ACC480
AppellantThe Moga Transport Company Pvt. Ltd.
RespondentKrishan Kumar Goel and ors.
Cases ReferredLachhman Singh v. Gurmit Kaur
Excerpt:
- - 3. evidence was sought to be led on behalf of the moga transport company bus that the accident occurred as the brakes failed. there is no evidence of any mechanic to support this version and at any rate mere failure of brakes cannot by itself absolve the bus-driver from blame unless it can be shown that the detect was such as could not have been detected or rectified by exercise of due care. gurmit kaur, 1979 plr-i, 16' would clearly be the appropriate multiplier to be applied and the dependency deserves to be taken at rs. the amount payable i to the minor claimants shall be paid to them in such manner as the tribunal may deem to be in their best interest......and died. this accident occurred on january 13, 1979 at i p.m. on the moga kot kapura road. the moga transport company bus was held to be wholly to blame for this accident a sum of rs. 37,228/- was awarded as compensation to the widow and children of gurdial singh deceased and rs. 11,634/39-p to the claimsant krishan kumar for his injuries.2. the finding of negligence recorded against the moga transport company bus warrants no interference in appeal. it is the common case of the parties that it came from behind and hit into the standing malwa bus service bus. according to pw 3 krishan kumar, who was one of the passengers in the moga transport company bus, the malwa bus service bus was standing on its correct side of the road when the moga transport company bus came and hit into it. it.....
Judgment:

S.S. Sodhi, J.

1. Many passeDgers were injured, seriously too when the Moga Transport Company Bus PUC 5029 came from behind and hit into the standing Malwa Bus Service Bus PUK 6800. Amongst those who stustained serious injuries was the claimsant-Krishan Kumar. The other being Gurdial Singh who in face later succumbed to his injuries and died. This accident occurred on January 13, 1979 at I P.M. on the Moga Kot Kapura Road. The Moga Transport Company bus was held to be wholly to blame for this accident A sum of Rs. 37,228/- was awarded as compensation to the widow and children of Gurdial Singh deceased and Rs. 11,634/39-P to the claimsant Krishan Kumar for his injuries.

2. The finding of negligence recorded against the Moga Transport Company bus warrants no interference in appeal. It is the common case of the parties that it came from behind and hit into the standing Malwa Bus Service bus. According to PW 3 Krishan Kumar, who was one of the passengers in the Moga Transport Company Bus, the Malwa Bus Service Bus was standing on its correct side of the road when the Moga Transport Company Bus came and hit into it. It has also come in evidence that after I causing this accident, both the driver and the conductor of the Moga Transport Company bus ran away. This conduct is a clear indication of this bus driver I being at Pault.

3. Evidence was sought to be led on behalf of the Moga Transport Company bus that the accident occurred as the brakes failed. There is no evidence of any mechanic to support this version and at any rate mere failure of brakes cannot by itself absolve the bus-driver from blame unless it can be shown that the detect was such as could not have been detected or rectified by exercise of due care. Such evidence is conspicuous by its absence here. On the facts and circumstances of this case, there was indeed only one conclusion possible, namely; that arrived by the Tribunal that the Moga Transport Company bus was wholly to blame for this accident.

4. Turning to the quantum of compensation payable to the claimants, no reduction in the amount awarded to Krishan Kumar can indeed be justified. The evidence on record shows that both his legs were fractured in this accident. He spent 4/5 months in hospital and his medical expenses were to the tune of about Rs. 4,000/-. Besides this, he also had to remain on leave without pay for about six months. His salary being Rs. 1,100/-per month. In such a situation, the amount awarded, if anything, was on the lower side. No appeal or cross-objections having been filed by this claimant, the amount awarded cannot, therefore, be enhanced.

5. Turning to the case of Gurdial Singh deceased, it will be seen that be was only about 34 years of age at the time of his death. He died leaving behind his 32 years old widow-Gurmail Kaur and their five children-four daughters ranging in age from 3 to 13 years and an 8-years old son. Gurdial, Singh was a Naik in the Army according to PW 9 RL Tiwari, Section Officer, his total emoluments were Rs. 446.70 paise per mensem. Besides this, he was entitled to free residence, food and clothing. Considering the circumstances of the claimants and the deceased in the context of the principles Lald down by the Full Bench in Lachhman Singh v. Gurmit Kaur, 1979 PLR-I, '16' would clearly be the appropriate multiplier to be applied and the dependency deserves to be taken at Rs. 4,000/- per annum. This would work out to Rs. 64,000/- which the claimsants must indeed be held entitled to.

6. The compensation payable to the claimants here is accordingly enhanced to Rs. 64,000/- (Rs. Sixty four thousand only) which they shall be entitled to along with interest at the rate of 12 per cent per annum from the date of the application to the date of the payment of the amount awarded. Out (of the amount awarded a sum of Rs. 5,000/- each shall be payable to the children of the deceased and the balance to his widow. The amount payable i to the minor claimants shall be paid to them in such manner as the Tribunal may deem to be in their best interest.

7. The Moga Transport Company and the bus-driver Bant Singh shall be jointly and severally liable for the compensation awarded.

8. In the result, the cross-objections filed hy the claimsants in the case of Gurdial Singh deceased are hereby accepted, but both the appeals are dismissed with costs. Counsel fee Rs. 500/-, (One set only).


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