HC orders Rs 1.07 cr to accident victim's family

HC orders Rs 1.07 cr to accident victim's family

The High Court recently awarded Rs 1.07 crore as compensation to the wife and son of a lone breadwinner of the family who died in a car accident in 2009.

The family had filed a Miscellaneous First Appeal before the High Court seeking enhancement of the compensation after the X Additional Judge and Member, Motor Accident Claims Tribunal, had awarded only Rs 38.58 lakh to the family.

A division bench comprising Justice K L Manjunath and Justice Ravi Malimath passed an order granting Rs 1,07,16,800 to the claimants to be paid by United India Insurance Company Limited. The deceased, Gautham (name changed), was a 32-year-old technical regional manager of a multinational company on Hosur Road, drawing Rs 11.39 lakh as salary per annum. He and his colleagues were travelling from Bengaluru to Hassan when their car collided with a truck near Narayanipalya and Gautham died on the spot.

K A Chandrashekhara, the advocate who represented the wife of the deceased, said that
at the time of the accident, Gautham’s wife was seven months pregnant living with Gautham’s mother who had no source of income. He said that the trial court had not calculated the compensation amount based on the directions of the Supreme Court which had increased the claimant compensation amount by adding 50 per cent of the salary after deductions towards ‘future prospects’.

The advocate said that the trial court had calculated the compensation amount based on one-third of the salary which otherwise should have been 50 per cent, given his age and salary.

“The family had to wait for more than five years to claim their compensation as per the Supreme Court direction. The family has been surviving on the compensation amount that was awarded to them in the trial court,” Chandrashekhara said. He said that there are many cases in the Motor Accident Claims Tribunal, in which the claimants are waiting for their compensation amount to increase as per the directions of the Supreme Court in the Sarla Verma case.

The bench, while partly allowing the petition, observed that the calculation of the Tribunal as ‘loss of dependency’ is inappropriate and directed to pay the increased compensation amount of Rs 1.7 crore, along with interest of nine per cent per annum, in eight weeks.

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