C. Mohanraju Vs. Divisional
Manager, United India Assurance Co. Ltd. and another
J U D G M E N T
2.09.2002, at about 2.30 pm, the appellant-claimant was walking on the Byatarayanapura
road near the bus stop, when the driver of a motorcycle (bearing no. KA-03-X-8591)
came and dashed against the appellant, as a result of which the appellant sustained
serious head injuries leading to weakness of his right hand and leg. The respondents
are the insurance company and the owner of the offending vehicle respectively.
appellant filed a claim petition under Section 166 of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988,
claiming compensation to the tune of Rs.4,00,000/-.
Motor Accident Claims Tribunal (MACT), vide award dated 22.06.2006, concluded
that the accident had occurred due to the rash and negligent driving of the motorcycle,
resulting injuries to the appellant. Though the doctor had assessed disability at
25% to the whole body, the Tribunal took it at 10%. The appellant was aged 35
years and was involved in silk winding. He claimed to be earning Rs.4,500 per month
but there was no documentary evidence to prove his income. Hence, the Tribunal assessed
it at Rs.50/- per day, which amounted to Rs.18,000/- annually and Rs.6,30,000/-
during his whole life. As 10% loss was caused due to disability, the Tribunal
held that the appellant was entitled to Rs.63,000/- towards loss of future income.
The Tribunal also awarded Rs.20,000/- for pain and suffering, Rs.10,000/- for loss
of future amenities, Rs.1,200/- for medical expenses, Rs.5,000/- for future medical
treatment and conveyance. Accordingly, total compensation was fixed at Rs.1,02,200/-,
payable with interest @ 6% p.a. from the date of the claim petition till date of
deposit by the insurance company on behalf of the owner of the offending
by the compensation awarded by the Tribunal, the appellant appealed to the High
Court of Karnataka at Bangalore. The High Court partly allowed the appeal by enhancing
the compensation amount. It held that as the appellant was a silk weaver, he could
not have been earning less than Rs.3,500/- per month. Thus, it awarded loss of income
during laid-up period as Rs.10,500/- (Rs.3,500 X 3 months). The High Court calculated
the disability of the whole body at 25%. It held that annual loss of income would
be Rs. 10,500. As the claimant was aged 34 years, the applicable multiplier
loss of future income was calculated at Rs.1,68,000/- (Rs.10,500 X 16). Considering
the nature of injuries suffered by the appellant, the High Court also enhanced amount
awarded for pain and suffering to Rs.35,000/-, for loss of amenities to Rs.50,000/-,
for medical and allied expenses to Rs.10,000/-. Accordingly, total compensation
amounted to Rs.2,78,500/- along with interest on the enhanced amount @ 6% p.a. from
the date of the claim petition till date of payment. 6. Being still aggrieved by
the judgment of the High Court, the appellant filed the present appeal claiming
further enhancement of compensation.
heard the parties and perused the materials on record, we are of the opinion
that the appeal deserves to be allowed.
High Court, in calculating future loss of income, took the monthly income of
the appellant to be Rs.3,500/-; thus annual income would amount to Rs.42,000/-.
Accordingly, annual income of Rs.42,000/- at a multiplier of 16 amounts to Rs.6,72,000/-.
The next question for consideration is the percentage of disability.
per the doctor's evidence, doctor assessed disability as hemiperesis right side
at 40%, severe headache 10%, blurring of vision 10% and recent loss of memory at
10%. He assessed 25-30% disability of the whole body. The doctor also added that
as a result of the disability, the appellant was incapable of doing silk winding
work or any other manual work. It seems that there is severe weakness of the right
hand and leg. The appellant is a silk winder, an occupation for which he needs to
use his hands. Weakening of his right hand would adversely affect his ability to
perform his occupation as he had been doing before the accident. As a result, we
assess the disability of the victim to earn in future at 30% as against 25% assessed
by the High Court.
loss of future income amounts to Rs.2,01,600/- (30% of Rs.6,72,000/-). We also enhance
the compensation awarded for future medical expenses to Rs.10,000/-. The compensation
awarded by the High Court under the remaining heads is sustained. Thus, it comes
to Rs.3,17,100/-, which we round off to Rs.3,20,000/-. Interest will be payable
on the enhanced amount at 6% from the date of the claim petition till date of
the appeal is allowed.12. No order as to costs.
(ASOK KUMAR GANGULY)