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THE R.S.R.T.C. v SMT.SAVITRI DEVI & ORS - CMA Case No. 547 of 2005  RD-RJ 1211 (26 July 2005)
RSRTC vs. Savitri and others. 2. S.B. Civil Misc. Appeal No.5314/2004 DR(J)
RSRTC vs. Savitri and others.
Date : 26.7.2005
HON'BLE MR. PRAKASH TATIA, J.
Mr. VK Mathur, for the appellant.
Brief facts of the case are that two claim petitions one by mother of deceased (Claim Case No.194/2003) and another by wife and children of deceased (Claim Case
No.162/2003) for getting compensation on account of death of Rajendra Singh @ Raju were filed before the Motor
Accident Claims Tribunal, Hanumangarh alleging therein that said Rajendra Singh was travelling in bus no. RJ 31P 0128 when coming down from the said bus, the said bus was started by driver and rear wheel of the bus crushed
Rajendra Singh. Immediately the public stopped the bus and on enquiry, they found that the driver was Darshan Singh.
FIR was lodged forthwith on 26.3.2003 itself. After investigation, challan was filed against the bus driver under Sections 279 and 304A IPC.
The claimants in their claim petitions claimed
Rs.4,25,000/- and Rs.16,00,500/- respectively.
Before the Tribunal, the claimants examined AW1 Savitri
Devi (wife of deceased), AW2 Savitri Devi (mother of deceased) and AW3 Krishan Lal. The appellant produced NAW1
Darshan Singh, NAW2 Gurmeet singh and NAW3 Badri Narayan.
The Tribunal considered the evidence of all the witnesses and thereafter, gave reasons for not relying upon the statements of the witnesses produced by the appellant and accepted the statements of the claimants which were supported by circumstantial evidence and thereafter, reached to the conclusion that it was the fault of the bus driver and Rajendra died in the accident. The Tribunal assessed the income of the deceased only Rs.24,000/- per annum and applied the multiplier of 16 in view of the fact that the deceased was of the age of 25 years only. In total, the tribunal awarded compensation of Rs.2,78,000/-.
According to learned counsel for the appellant, the accident occurred when the bus was about to start and in fact, it started and went to a short distance only and this accident was not caused by the bus but a jeep was coming which hit Rajendra Singh and at the same time, the police vehicle reached to the spot. It is submitted that the appellant produced independent witnesses but the Tribunal wrongly rejected their statements.
I have considered the submissions of learned counsel for the appellant and perused the reasons given in the impugned award.
There is no dispute about the statements which were given by the driver of bus as well as the witnesses produced by the appellant. The Tribunal very carefully noticed the fact that the FIR was lodged forthwith and after investigation, challan was filed against the driver
Darshan Singh. The witnesses produced by the appellant in fact by their own statements before the Tribunal exposed themselves and, therefore, the Tribunal was very right in holding that the witnesses of the appellant cannot be relied upon.
NAW 3 Badri Narayan is RMP Doctor and he is a chance witness. According to him, he signed blank papers and gave to the police and this fact has not even been supported by the documentary evidence because of the simple reason that he admitted that he signed FIR also and not only the other documents. Both the witnesses Gurmeet Singh and Badri
Narayan stated that immediately after the accident, the police jeep came on the spot. If it is so, then the jeep which in fact hit the deceased, would have been caught by the police. The appellant and its witnesses failed to prove that why the police will involve the appellant's driver in this accident if they reached on the spot immediately after the accident.
In the totality of the circumstances, the appellant's witnesses were rightly not relied upon by the tribunal. So far as quantum is concerned, on the face of it, it is on lower side. The deceased was of 25 years age only and his income has been assessed to be Rs.2,000/- per month and multiplier of 16 only has been applied.
In view of the above, no case is made out for interference in the impugned award. Hence, both these appeals are dismissed.
(PRAKASH TATIA), J.
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