The Telangana High Court while dealing with an appeal filed by the Andhra Pradesh State Electricity Board upheld the order of the Trial Court that awarded compensation to the family members of a man who died due to electrocution.

A Single Bench of Justice P.Sree Sudha said, “The trial Court relied upon a decision of the Supreme Court in M.P.Electricity Board Vs.Shail Kumar and others, wherein it was held that Electricity Board is liable to pay compensation irrespective of any negligence or carelessness on the part of the Electricity Board when a person died due to contact with live electric wire lying on the road. The trial Court has also observed that the liability cast upon the department is strict liability and even if there was no negligence on the part of the department, they are liable to pay compensation for the death of the deceased. In view of the above citation the Electricity Department is liable to pay the compensation even though there is no negligence on their part."

Advocate Zakir Ali Danish appeared on behalf of the appellant while Advocate K M Mahender Reddy appeared for the respondent.

In this case, a man going to the fields stepped on a suspended snapped live wire of a low-tension line passing through the fields and sustained extensive burns and shocks leading to his death while undergoing the treatment. The wife and children of the deceased filed a suit for compensation of Rs.4,00,000/-.

The Trial Court while considering the entire evidence on record, including age, occupation, and income of the deceased granted compensation of Rs.1,88,000/- at the rate of 6% interest per annum out of which the wife was entitled to Rs.37,600/- and the share of children be kept in FDR in any nationalized bank till they attain the age of majority.

Aggrieved by the abovementioned order, the appeal was preferred by the electricity department. It was contended on their behalf that there was no negligence on their part and that there was heavy gale/rain and wind which resulted in the snapping of the live wire and therefore, the accident occurred only due to the negligence of the deceased.

The Court, therefore, upheld the order of the Trial Court.

Accordingly, the Court dismissed the appeal.

Cause Title- The Chairman, APSEB v. Smt. Razia Begum

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