Report No. 85
11.8. Position examined.-
It appears to us that section 110B needs to be amplified on this point. It should be noted that the Act is not confined to a claim against particular categories of persons, such as the insurer, the owner and the driver. Even the jurisdiction of the Claims Tribunal is unrestricted in this respect, under section 110. If all the situations in which a cause of action may arise are not taken care of by section 110B, then a certain amount of incompleteness would survive in section 110B. All claims under section 110 are not fully taken care of by section 110B. And yet the jurisdiction of civil courts would be barred by reason of section 110F. This would not be a satisfactory situation.
This difficulty arising from section 110B particularly needs to be remedied. There may be several situations in which a person who is neither the owner nor the driver might, under common law principles, become liable for an accident caused by the use of a motor vehicle. A claim for compensation in such a case would fall within section 110(1), being a claim for compensation "in respect of accidents involving the death of or bodily injury to persons arising out of the use of motor vehicles........ ".But section 110B-the provision which requires the Tribunal to make an order as to quantum of compensation against owner, driver or insured-leaves out the case. The following are a few illustrative situations:-
(i) A car is given to a prospective purchaser, whose driver drives the car and causes an accident. In such a case, apart from the driver, the prospective purchaser would also be liable.
(ii) The car is sent to a garage.1 The repairer and his driver who caused the accident.
(iii) The registered owner may loan the car to X, who allows his driver to drive the car and the victim is injured.
(iv) The registered owner asks a passenger to close the door. The passenger closes the door, but, in doing so, negligently slams the door on the fingers of the victim.
It is also worthy of notice that section 110 [unlike section 95(1)(b) and also unlike section 94(1)1 is not confined to the use of a motor vehicle in a public place. The provisions of section 110 are wide enough to cover accidents which occur in a private place2. To cover all these cases, in which section 110 would come into play, section 110B should be expanded.
1. Cf. Govindarajulu v. Govindaraja, AIR 1966 Mad 332.
2. L.I.C. v. Karthyani, AIR 1976 Ori 21 (24), para. 13 (S. Acharya, J.).