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Man Kauri and ors. Vs. Sat Paul and ors. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectInsurance;Motor Vehicles
CourtPunjab and Haryana High Court
Decided On
Judge
Reported inI(1986)ACC181
AppellantMan Kauri and ors.
RespondentSat Paul and ors.
Excerpt:
.....held him to be an unreliable witness. 6. such being the state of evidence on record, no exception can be taken to the finding of the tribunal that the claimants had failed to estabish that the accident had caused by the truck hrj-5595. 7. this appeal is accordingly hereby dismissed......place on july 7, 1979 at about 9 p.m. the case of the claimants rests upon the testimony of pw 4 sunder singh and pw 6 raghbir singh. according to said sunder singh, was returning home from the university when he saw this accident. he deposed as per the claimants' version namely that om parkash deceased fell off the rikshaw and was then run over by the truck. tie tribunal held him to be an unreliable witness. he was in fact branded as a liar. a reading of his testimony would indeed show that he does not deserve any credence. the statement of this witness was recorded by the police the day after the accident when he stated that he was taken to the police station by mabavir, the brother of the deceased. it is significant to note that there is, on record. the daily diary report exhibit pb.....
Judgment:

S.S. Sodhi, J.

1. The identity of the offending truck emreges as the Main point for consideration in the appeal here.

2. According to the claimants (Om Parkash deceased was proceeding towards his house in Shakti Nagar, Hissar and when he reached near Malik Hospital, the driver of his rikshaw suddenly took it on to the kachcha portion of the road on seeing the truck HRJ-5595 coming from the opposite direction at a fast and reckless speed. In the process Om Parkash fell off the rikshaw on account of a bump received by him. It was when he fell that he is said to have been run over by this truck. The respondents, however, denied the involvement of this truck in any such accident. The Tribunal negatived the claim for compensation put-forth by the widow and children of Om Parkash deceased holding that they had failed to prove that this accident had been caused by the truck HRJ 5595. It is this finding that was sought to be challenged in appeal.

3. The accident in the present case is said to have taken place on July 7, 1979 at about 9 P.M. The case of the claimants rests upon the testimony of PW 4 Sunder Singh and PW 6 Raghbir Singh. According to said Sunder Singh, was returning home from the University when he saw this accident. He deposed as per the claimants' version namely that Om Parkash deceased fell off the rikshaw and was then run over by the truck. Tie Tribunal held him to be an unreliable witness. He was in fact branded as a liar. A reading of his testimony would indeed show that he does not deserve any credence. The statement of this witness was recorded by the police the day after the accident when he stated that he was taken to the police station by Mabavir, the brother of the deceased. It is significant to note that there is, on record. the Daily Diary report exhibit PB with regard to this accident recorded on the statement of one. Tej Bhan at about 9.20 P.M. on the day the accident occurred. In this statement, there is no mention of the number of the truck invloved in the accident or even the name of the deceased. According to PW 4 Sunder Singh ; PW 5 Mahavir, the brother of the deceased, came to the place of incident of few minutes after the accident. If this was so, there is so explanation why the statement of this witness was not recorded that very night and there was, at the rate, no mention to the police of the name of the deceased or the number of the offending vehicle. What is more, PW 5 Mahavir denied that he ever met Sunder Singh on the day of the accident. He in fact deposed that he learnt of the accident only the next day when he went to the police station .In this situation the Tribunal very rightly discarded the testimony of PW 4 Sunder Singh.

4. Similarly, the testimony of PW 6 Raghbir Singh was also rightly not relied upon. He too emerged as a witness only a day after the accident. According to him he happened to go to the place of accident the next day at about mid-day when he found the police there and then he got his statement recorded. In his case too if indeed he had seen the occurrence and noted the number of the truck, the report by Tej Bhan to the police would not have omitted to contain the truck number.

5. The most material witness as per the claimants' version would undoubtedly have been the rikshaw driver but he was not produced. In this behalf, it is significant to note that the Tribunal had summoned the file of the Criminal case registered with regard to this accident. A perusal of it shows that this rickshaw had been given on supardari to one Hoshiari Lal. There is no explanation to account for the non examination of this person.

6. Such being the state of evidence on record, no exception can be taken to the finding of the Tribunal that the claimants had failed to estabish that the accident had caused by the truck HRJ-5595.

7. This appeal is accordingly hereby dismissed. In the circumstances, however, there will be no order as to costs.


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