The Supreme Court enhanced the amount of compensation in a motor accident compensation matter saying that the Motor Accidents Claims Tribunal (MACT) and High Court committed a serious error in not accepting medical evidence.

The Court observed that the Tribunal reduced the percentage of disability on surmises and conjectures.

The Court was dealing with a civil appeal filed against the order of the Madhya Pradesh High Court by which the compensation awarded by the MACT by an award in a sum of Rs. 87,700/- was enhanced to Rs. 1,27,700/-.

The two-Judge Bench of Justice Sanjay Karol and Justice Aravind Kumar observed, “In the light of the afore-stated position of law explained when the medical evidence tendered by the claimant is perused, we are of the considered view that tribunal and the High Court committed a serious error in not accepting the said medical evidence and in the absence of any contra evidence available on record, neither the tribunal nor the High Court could have substituted the disability to 10% as against the opinion of the doctor (PW-5) certified at 17%. In that view of the matter the compensation awarded under the head ‘loss of income’ towards permanent disability deserves to be enhanced by construing the whole body disability at 17%.”

Advocate Nitin S. Tambwekar appeared for the appellant while Advocate Ambhoj Kumar Sinha appeared for the respondents.

In this case, challenge was laid in the appeal to the order passed by Madhya Pradesh High Court, Indore Bench whereunder the compensation awarded by MACT via an award in a sum of Rs. 87,700/- with interest @ 7% p.a. was enhanced to Rs. 1,27,700/- with same interest contending inter-alia that compensation so awarded by the High Court was on the lower side and the same be enhanced.

A road accident occurred in 2013 and injuries were sustained by the appellant/ claimant. Consequential disability sustained, issuance of insurance policy to the offending vehicle and policy being in force on the date of accident were all undisputed facts before the court.

The Supreme Court after hearing the contentions of the counsel said, “The monthly income of the claimant has been construed as Rs.3,500/- which is on the lower side particularly in the background of the fact that the accident in question having occurred on 23.04.2013 and the evidence on record disclosing that claimant was self-employed as a mechanic and had work experience of over 30 years. Resultantly his income has to be construed at Rs.6,500/- per month in substitution to Rs.3,500/- computed by the Tribunal and the High Court. Thus, the claimant/appellant would be entitled for enhanced compensation of Rs.92,820/- (Rs.6,500 X 12 X 7 X 17%) towards loss of future income.”

The Court noted that the compensation awarded by the Tribunal under the heads of Attendant charges, pain and suffering, transportation together in a sum of Rs. 9,000 being abysmally on the lower side and the same deserves to be enhanced. Therefore, a lump sum compensation of Rs. 1,00,000/- was awarded by the court under these three (3) heads.

“We direct the Respondent No.3-Insurance Company to pay the balance amount of compensation with interest @ 7% P.A. as awarded by the Tribunal by depositing the same before the jurisdictional tribunal within 6 weeks from the date of this order”, it ordered.

Accordingly, the Apex Court allowed the appeal and enhanced the compensation.

Cause Title- Aabid Khan v. Dinesh and Others


Appellant: Advocate Nitin S. Tambwekar and AOR Seshatalpa Sai Bandaru.

Respondents: AOR Ambhoj Kumar Sinha and Advocate Priyadarshi Kumar.

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