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UNITED INDIA INSURANCE CO. LTD versus MANGALAKUMARI

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UNITED INDIA INSURANCE CO. LTD v. MANGALAKUMARI - MFA No. 668 of 2001(B) [2007] RD-KL 7191 (4 April 2007)

IN THE HIGH COURT OF KERALA AT ERNAKULAM

MFA No. 668 of 2001(B)

1. UNITED INDIA INSURANCE CO. LTD.
... Petitioner

Vs

1. MANGALAKUMARI
... Respondent

For Petitioner :SRI.P.V.JYOTHI PRASAD

For Respondent :SRI.J.S.AJITHKUMAR

The Hon'ble MR. Justice P.R.RAMAN The Hon'ble MR. Justice ANTONY DOMINIC

Dated :04/04/2007

O R D E R

P.R.RAMAN & ANTONY DOMINIC, JJ.


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M.F.A.Nos.668, 669, 690 & 835 OF 2001
======================

Dated this the 4th day of April, 2007



J U D G M E N T

Antony Dominic, J.

M F A N o s . 6 6 8 a n d 8 3 5 o f 2 0 0 1 a r i s e o u t o f O P (M V ) N o .1 00 / 9 4 a n d MF A N o s. 6 6 9 & 6 90 o f 2 00 1 a r i s e o u t o f O P ( M V ) N o . 62 2 o f 1 9 9 4 , o n t h e f i l e o f th e Mo to r A c c i d e n ts C l a i m s T r i b u n a l , T r i v a n d ru m . T h e s e a p pe a l s h a ve b e e n f i l e d by t h e A d di t i o n a l 4 t h r e s p on d en t , t h e o w n e r o f T e m p o V a n b e ar i n g R e g n . N o . K L 0 1/ 2 6 4 9 a n d t h e ad d i ti on a l 7 t h re sp o n de n t, th e i ns u re r o f M a r u ti C a r b e ar i n g R e g n . N o . K L 0 1 A /4 5 26 . S in c e th e a pp e ll a n t s a re pa r t i e s to b ot h O P (M V )N o . 1 0 0 / 94 a n d 6 2 2 /9 4 a nd t h e a p p e a l s r e l a t e t o t he s a me a c c i d en t , w e d i s p o s e o f t he a pp e al s t o ge t h e r . 2 . T h e c la i m p e t i t i on s w e re f i l e d f o l l o w i n g a n a c c i de n t t h a t o cc u rr e d on 2 6 .1 0 .1 9 9 3 a t a b ou t 6 .4 5 p .m . w h e n l a te S ri . B a bu ra j w as t ra v el i n g fr o m T ri v a n d u r m t o N e m o m , th ro u g h t h e T r i v an d ru m - N ey y at ti n ka ra N a ti o n a l H i g h w a y, o n a S c o o te r b ea r i ng R e g n . N o . K B T 5 3 5 8 , w i t h t h e p et i t io n e r i n O P (M V ) N o .6 22 o f 1 9 9 4 , o n t h e p i l l i o n . W h e n th ey re a ch e d n ea r M.F.A.Nos.668, 669, 690 & 835 OF 2001 K a ra k ka m a nd a p a m , a T e m p o va n b e a r i n g R e g. N o .K L 0 1 /2 6 4 9 d ri v e n b y t h e 2 n d re s p o n d e n t h i t th e S c o o te r a s a re s u l t o f w hi c h b oth t he r i d e r a n d t h e p i l l io n r i d e r t h r ow n o u t o n th e R o a d a n d s u s t ai n e d s e r i o u s i n j u r i e s a n d S r i .B a b u r a j s uc c u m b e d t o th e i n j u ri e s a t t h e M e d i c a l C o l l e g e H o s p i ta l . In th e a b o ve b ac k g r o u n d , th e w i fe an d c h i l d r e n o f B a b u r a j f i l e d O P ( M V ) N o .1 00 / 9 4 c l a i m i n g R s . 5 l a k hs an d S r i .M ad h u ku m ar , t h e p i l l i o n r i de r , f i l e d O P ( MV ) N o. 6 2 4 /9 4 c l a i m i n g R s . 3 l a k h s . S u bs e q u e n t to th e f i l i n g of th e c l a i m p et i t i o n b y or de r d a te d 0 2.1 2 .1 9 97 , a d d i t i o n al r e s p o n d e nt s 4 t o 7 , w h i c h i n c l u d e s th e a pp e ll a n t s h e r e i n , w e re i m p l e a de d i n t he s e c a s e s o n t h e a l l e ga t i o n th a t t h e Ma ru ti c a r o f w h ic h t h e 6 t h r e sp o n d e n t i s t h e r e g is t er ed ow n e r an d t h e 7 t h re s p o n d e n t , th e a p p e l l a n t i n MF A N o s. 6 6 8 an d 6 69 o f 2 0 0 1 w as t h e i n s u re r , w a s a l s o i n v o l ve d i n t h e a c c i de n t. A c c o r d i n g t o t h e c l a i m an t s , t h e Ma r u ti c ar w h i ch w as c o m i n g f r om b e h i n d a t te m p te d to o ve r ta k e th e S c o o t e r a n d t u rn ed to w a r d s t h e le f t s i de h i t t i n g do w n th e sc o o te r i n t h e p ro c e s s . I t w a s s ta t e d t h a t w h i le s o , th e t e m p o va n , o f w hi c h t h e a p p e l la n t in M F A N o s .6 90 o f 2 0 0 1 a n d 8 3 5 o f 2 0 0 1 i s t he M.F.A.Nos.668, 669, 690 & 835 OF 2001 r e g is t er ed o w n e r a n d d r i v en b y th e 2 n d r e s p on d en t , c a m e fr o m t h e o p p o s i te d i re c ti on i n a ra sh a n d n e g l i g e n t ma n ne r r a n ov e r l a t e B a b u r a j , r e s u l t i n g i n s e r i o u s i n j u ri e s a n d h i s e v e n tu a l d ea t h . 3 . T h e pa r t i e s f i l e d t he i r c ou n te r s t at e me n ts a n d o r a l e vi d e n c e o f P W 1 an d P W 2 w e r e r ec o r d e d . E xs . A 1 to A 23 w e r e a ls o m a rk e d i n e v i d e nc e . T a ki n g i n t o a c c ou n t th e e v i d e n c e o n r e co rd th e T r i b u n a l by i t s c o m m o n a wa rd d a te d 4 t h D e ce m b e r 2 00 0 h e l d t ha t th e a c c i d e nt o c c u rr e d d u e to t he c o m p os i te n eg l i g e n c e o f t h e d r i v e r s o f b o th t he M a ru ti C a r an d T e mp o va n a nd a p po r t i o n e d t he l i a b i l i ty e qu a l l y . T h e r e a f te r , i n O . P . (M V ) N o .1 00 / 9 4 t he T ri b un a l a w ar d e d R s .3 ,2 2 ,6 4 4 /- w i th i n t e r es t at 1 2% f r o m 1 9. 0 1 . 1 9 9 4 a nd di r e c te d t h a t th e a m o u n t b e p ai d by c o n c e r n e d r e s p o n d e nt e q u a ll y . In re s pe c t o f t he c l a im a n t i n OP ( M V ) N o . 6 2 2 o f 1 9 9 4 , th e T r i b u n a l p as s e d an a w a rd g r a n t in g R s .6 3 ,6 3 0 / - , w i th i n t e r es t a t 1 2 % f r o m 0 5 . 0 5 .1 9 9 5 t o b e a pp o rt i o ne d i n th e s a m e m a n n e r . 4 . I t i s a gg r i ev e d b y th e c o m m o n a w a rd i n O P ( MV ) N o .1 00 / 9 4 a nd 6 2 2 / 94 , th a t t h e a p p e l l a n ts h a ve fi l ed t h i s M.F.A.Nos.668, 669, 690 & 835 OF 2001 a pp e al . T he c o nt e n t i o n r a i s ed by th e c ou n s el fo r t h e a p p e l l a n ts a re th a t th e f i n d i n g s r eg a rd i ng th e i nv o l v em e nt o f t h e T e m p o V a n a n d M a r u ti ca r , b a s e d o n w h ic h th e T r i b u n a l h a s p a s s e d th e i mp ug n e d aw a rd i s er ro ne o u s . C o u n s e l ha ve a l s o m a d e r e fe r e n c e to t he s c e n e m a ha z a r a n d t he o t he r d o c u m e n t s w h i c h w er e r e l i e d o n b y t he T r i b u n a l i ts e l f , i n s up p o r t of t h ei r r e sp e c t i v e c o n te n t i o n s . 5 . T h e o n l y is s u e th a t a r i s e fo r ou r c o n si d er at i o n i s th e c o rr ec tn es s of t h e fi n d i n g o f th e T r i b u n a l i n r e g a r d t o t h e i nv o lv em e n t o f th e af o re sa i d ve h i c l es i n th e ac c i de n t an d o n a n a nx i o u s c o n s i d e r a t i o n o f th e ma t te r i n i t s e n t ir e t y , w e a re s a t i s fi ed th a t t he aw ar d r eq u i re s to b e s u s t ai n e d . 6 . T h e i s s u e a s to a t w h os e n eg l i g e nc e th e a c c i d e n t h a s o cc u rr e d h a s b e en ex a m in e d i n d e t a i l by th e T r i b u n a l . T h e T r i b u n a l h as r e fe r r e d to t h e a l l e g a t io n s , th e e v i d e nc e o f P W s 1 a nd 2 a n d E x t s .A 1 to A 2 3 . T h i s i n c lu d e d a m o n g o th e rs , F I R , V e hi c l e M a h a z a r , W o u n d C e r t i f i c a t e s , MV I R e p o rts o f b o th t h e v eh i c l e s , c h ar ge s h ee t a n d s c e n e m a ha z a r. T h e s e d o c u m e n t s, p ar t i c ul a r l y t h e v eh i c l e r e p o r t a n d th e s c en e m a h a z a r i n d i c a t e s M.F.A.Nos.668, 669, 690 & 835 OF 2001 t h e p r e s e n c e o f th e v eh i c l e s es p e c i a l l y th e M a r u ti c a r w h o s e i ns u re r i s t h e a pp e l l a n t i n M F A N o s . 66 8 a n d 6 6 9 o f 2 0 0 1 . T h e w i t ne s s e s , pa r t i c u l a r ly R W 1 t h e i n v e s ti g a t in g o f f i c e r , t ho u g h e xo ne r a te d t he re g i s t e re d o w n e r of th e M a ru t i c a r f r o m t h e c r i mi n a l c a se , d i d no t d e n y t h e in v o l ve me n t o f th e M a ru t i c a r o r i ts p re s en c e a t t h e p l a c e o f o c c u r r en c e . A d d e d t o th a t t he T r i b u n a l ma d e r e fe r e n c e t o th e p o s t m o r t e m c e r t i fi c a t e , w h ic h r e co rd e d t h a t th e d e c e a s e d h a d s us t a i n ed m u l t i p l e i n j u r i e s a n d t h a t th e b ra in m at te r w a s pr o t r u d i n g , b a s e d on w h i c h th e T r i b u n a l fo u n d fo rc e i n th e c o nt e n t i o n t h a t th e i n j u r i es w e r e no t h i t an d r u n i n j u r i es b u t w e re o f a c a s e o f ru nn i n g ov e r . T he I n v es t i g a ti ng O f f i c e r w a s a l s o q u e st i o n e d o n th i s po s s i b il i ty , r e fe r r i n g t o th e n a t u re o f th e i n j u r i es th a t w e r e n o t e d i n t he p o s m or t em c e r t i f i c a t e . I t wa s o n th e b a si s o f th i s e v id e n c e , t ha t t he T r i b u n a l c o n c l ud e d t h at o n t h e i n v o l ve m en t o f t h e M a ru t i C a r a nd th a t i t w as a c a s e o f c o m p o s it e n e g l i g en c e o f t h e d r i v er s o f t h e M a ru t i c a r a n d T e mp o v a n . P ro c e e d in g fu r th e r , t h e T ri b un a l a pp o rt i o ne d th e l i a b i l i ty i n th e r at i o o f 5 0 :5 0 . 7 . T h e ev i d e n c e a v ai l ab l e i n th e c a s e l e a d s t o th e i r r e s i s t i b l e M.F.A.Nos.668, 669, 690 & 835 OF 2001 c o n c l us i on o f th e i n v o lve m e n t o f b o th t he T em p o v a n a n d t he M ar u ti C a r. W e d o n o t f i n d a n y e r r o r i n t h e c o nc l us i o n dr aw n b y t h e T r i b u n a l a n d a c c o rd i ng l y w e s u s ta i n t h e A w a r d . 8 . N o o t h e r p o i n ts h a v e b ee n u rg e d . T h e a p p e al s a r e a cc o rd i n g l y d i s m i s s e d w i th o u t a n y o r d e r a s t o c o s ts .

P.R.RAMAN, JUDGE.

ANTONY DOMINIC, JUDGE.

Rp


Copyright

Reproduced in accordance with s52(q) of the Copyright Act 1957 (India) from judis.nic.in, indiacode.nic.in and other Indian High Court Websites

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