Family of deceased road accident victim awarded Rs. 27 lakh by Thane MACT

A young widow, her minor daughter and an unmarried sister have been awarded a compensation of Rs. 27.58 lakhs for the accidental death of a man from Dombvili in 2013.

The Member of the MACT KD Vadane in his order last week directed the owner of a trailer Bhajwa’s and the Insurance company Reliance General Insurance Co. Ltd, to jointly and severally make the payment along with 8% interest per annum from the date of claim.

While the claimants were represented by Adv KT Thomas, the Insurance company was represented by Adv. KV Poojari who contested the case. The owner of the trailer did not not appear and hence the case was decided ex-parte against them.

The claimants Ketki Bhavesh Aswekar, 24, (Widow of the deceased), Spruha Bhavesh Aswekar, Minor (Daughter of the deceased), Ms. Sujata Sadanand Aswekar, 37, (Sister of the deceased) submitted in the court that the deceased 30, was working with Primeone Workforce Pvt. Ltd., Andheri, earning Rs.17,000/per month.

On the fatefulday July 15,2013 at about 8.55 a.m. the deceased was pillion rider on motorcycle which his cousin brother Harshad Gadgil was riding on Mumbai Airoli road, and when they were proceeding towards Koparkhairne and reached near Divagaon Circle, a trailer came from behind in high speed, and in rash & negligent manner, driver of it lost control over his vehicle, and dashed to the motorcycle. As a result of the same deceased sustained severe injuries and died on way to hospital.

The judge in his order noted, “On the other hand contention of the applicants is corroborated by the police papers on record. Therefore, in the absence of any rebuttal evidence contention of the applicants which is corroborated by the police papers on record appears to be trustworthy one. Therefore, I have no hesitation to come to conclusion that impugned accident occurred due to rash & negligent driving on the part of driver of trailer.

The judge also noted, “ Contention of the insurance company is that driver of the offending vehicle was not holding valid & effective driving licence on the material date of accident, therefore there is breach of terms & conditions of the policy. Burden lies on the insurance company to establish that there is breach of terms and conditions of the policy.

However, insurance company has not adduced any evidence to that effect. Thus, insurance company failed to discharge burden lies on it.

“Therefore, I have no hesitation to come to conclusion that insurance company failed to prove that there is breach of terms and conditions of the policy.

The Counsel for applicants submitted that at the time of accident the deceased was 30 years old, and by doing service with Primeone Workforce Pvt. Ltd., Andheri, Mumbai, earning Rs.17,000/per month, therefore taking into consideration future prospect of the deceased, compensation of Rs.50,00,000/be awarded.

To this the judge held, “ In the case in hand the deceased was on a fixed salary, and he was 32 years old, therefore 40% amount is required to be added in the income of the deceased under the head – future prospects, as per the guidelines issued by the Hon’ble Apex Court in supra case of National Insurance Company Limited V/s. Pranay Sethi and others.

Thus, applicants are entitled for compensation of Rs.26,88,000/under the head future loss of dependency. Moreover, applicants are also entitled for compensation of Rs.15,000/under the head – loss of love, affection & estate, Rs.40,000/towards loss of consortium and Rs.15,000/towards amount incurred for the funeral and last rites of the deceased, as laid down in supra case of National Insurance Company Limited V/s. Pranay Sethi and others. Thus, applicants in all entitled for compensation of Rs.27,58,000/, The court ordered that upon realizing of the amount a sum of Rs. 12 lakhs should be invested in the FD in the name of the minor and given directions for the distribution of the balance amount among the widow and sister of the deceased.

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