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Report No. 62

3.40 Two points which arise.-

Two points arise out of this sub-section-one of interpretation and the other of verbal symmetry. The first point is what is the exact scope of the expression "civil court" in the first part of the sub-section or of the expression "court of law" in the second part? In a Madhya Pradesh case1, it was held that the expression "civil court" includes a Motor Accident Claims Tribunal constituted under the Motor Vehicles Act so that obtaining compensation from the Tribunal bars a claim for compensation under the Workmen's Compensation Act.

1. Radhabai v. Bain Ram, (1971) Jabalpur Law Journal 17, (Krishnan and Oza JJ.), cited in the Yearly Digest (1971), Col. 2609.

3.41. So far as this particular tribunal is concerned, there is now a specific provision in the Motor Vehicles Act1 which provides that where the death of or bodily injury to any person gives rise to a claim for compensation under the Motor Vehicles Act and also under the Workmen's Compensation Act, 1923, the person entitled to compensation shall receive compensation under either of the Acts but not under both. To avoid the possibility of a conflict of views on the subject in respect of similar Tribunals it is in our view desirable

(i) to define the expression2 "civil court" as including other Tribunals entitled to order payment of compensation on death of or bodily injury to any person; and

(ii) to use the expression "civil court" in place of the expression "court of law", in the latter half of the sub-section.

Consequentially it will be desirable to add an explanation providing that "suit" includes claims for compensation for the death of or bodily injury to a person under the Motor Vehicles Act or any other law. We would like to make it clear that the agreement referred to in section 3(5) should be registered.

1. Section 110AA, Motor Vehicles Act, 1939.

2. This is not a draft.

Workmens Compensation Act, 1923 Back

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