Mobeen Begum and Ors Vs.
Bhupesh Singh and ANR  INSC 430 (12 March 2008)
S.B. Sinha & P.P. Naolekar
O R D E R CIVIL APPEAL NO. 2046-47 oF 2008 [Arising out of SLP(C) No.
8474/2007] Delay condoned.
The heirs and legal representatives of deceased Mohd. Ahmed are before us,
praying for enhancement of the amount of compensation for his death arising out
of a motor accident which took place on 3.9.2003.
The deceased was riding on a motorcycle. It dashed with a jeep for which a
criminal case was instituted. A claim petition was filed by the appellants
herein claiming compensation for a sum of Rs.25,95,000/-.
The Motor Accident Claims Tribunal awarded a total sum of Rs. 6 lakhs. On the premise that the income of the deceased at the time of accident was
Rs. 5,000/- per month, multiplier of 15 was applied by the learned Tribunal.
An appeal was preferred thereagainst by the respondent-Insurance Company. Before the High Court, a plea was raised that the deceased was also
negligent in riding the motorcycle and having regard to the fact that the same
contributed to the accident, the quantum of compensation paid in favour of the
claimants should be held to be on the higher side. The said contention was
rejected by the High Court. The High Court having regard to the materials brought on records was of the
opinion that application of the multiplier of 15 was improper. It applied
multiplier of 12, and in terms thereof the amount of compensation was
quantified at Rs. 4,49,500/-. Interest on the said sum was allowed at the rate of 6% per annum.
Quantification of compensation in a case of this nature would depend upon
the facts and circumstances of each case. Ordinarily, the Appellate Court
should not interfere with the amount of compensation assessed by the Tribunal
but there may be some exceptional case. Even in terms of the Second Schedule
appended to the Motor Vehicles Rules, a multiplier of 16 could have been
applied. Having regard to the age of the deceased a multiplier of 15 could have
been applied and if the same had not been done by the Tribunal, there was no
reason as to why the High Court should have interfered therewith. For the reasons aforementioned, we allow this appeal in part and direct that
an award be prepared applying the multiplier of 15 instead of 12. No costs.