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National Insurance Company Ltd., Chennai v/s L. Sudharsan & Another


Company & Directors' Information:- NATIONAL INSURANCE COMPANY LIMITED [Active] CIN = U10200WB1906GOI001713

Company & Directors' Information:- CHENNAI INSURANCE COMPANY LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U67200TN2000PLC045622

Company & Directors' Information:- NATIONAL CORPORATION PVT LTD [Not available for efiling] CIN = U51909PB1942PTC000480

Company & Directors' Information:- I.N. INSURANCE COMPANY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U67200DL1994PTC062554

    CRP.NPD. No. 3602 of 2018 & C.M.A. No. 1612 of 2019 & C.M.P. Nos. 20144 of 2018, 4616 of 2019

    Decided On, 07 July 2021

    At, High Court of Judicature at Madras

    By, THE HONOURABLE MR. JUSTICE G.K. ILANTHIRAIYAN

    For the Petitioner: S.R. Sree Vidhya, Advocate. For the Respondents: R1, Varadha Kamaraj, R2, D. Ferdinard for M/s. BFS Legal, Advocates.



Judgment Text

(Prayer: The Civil Revision Petition is filed under Article 227 of the Constitution of India, to set aside the order and decretal order dated 04.04.2017 made in I.A.No.985 of 2016 in MCOP.No.838 of 2012 on the file of III Additional District Judge, Thiruvallore camp at Poonamallee and allow the Civil Revision Petition as prayed for.The Civil Miscellaneous Appeal is filed under Section 173 of Motor Vehicles Act, 1988, against the judgment and decree dated 19.03.2014 in MCOP.No.838 of 2012 on the file of the Motor Accident Claims Tribunal-III Additional District Judge at Poonamallee.)Common Judgment1. C.R.P.NPD.No.3022 of 2018 is directed as against the order and decretal order passed in I.A.No.985 of 2016 in MCOP.No.838 of 2012 dated 19.03.2014 on the file of the Motor Accident Claims Tribunal-III Additional District Judge, Poonamallee, thereby dismissing the petition to review the order passed in M.C.O.P.No.838 of 2012.2. C.M.A.No.1612 of 2019 is directed as against the judgment and decree dated 19.03.2014 in MCOP.No.838 of 2012 on the file of the Motor Accident Claims Tribunal-III Additional District Judge, Poonamallee, thereby awarded a sum of Rs.1,25,000/- as compensation.3. The appellant is the second respondent in the claim petition filed by the first respondent herein. The case of the claimant is that on 02.04.2012 at 16.45 hours, when he was riding his motor cycle on CTH Road, Ambattur, near Telephone Exchange, the driver of the bus owned by the second respondent herein had driven the bus in a rash and negligent manner and hit the claimant's motor cycle. Due to which, he sustained multiple and grievous injuries with fractures. Therefore, the first respondent filed a claim petition before the claims Tribunal. The vehicle owned by the second respondent is insured with the appellant herein.4. Resisting the same, the appellant herein filed a counter and stated that the accident did not took place on the rash and negligent driving of the bus, but the accident took place only on the rash and negligent driving of the claimant and as such, he sustained multiple and grievous injuries with fractures. Therefore, the appellant/Insurance Company is not liable to pay any compensation.5. On the side of the claimant, P.W.1 and P.W.2 were examined and documents were marked as Ex.P.1 to Ex.P.6. On the side of the respondents in the Claim Petition, no one was examined and no documents were marked.6. On a perusal of the oral and documentary evidence, the claims Tribunal concluded that the accident took place only on the rash and negligent driving of the driver of the bus owned by the second respondent herein. The offended vehicle is insured with the appellant herein and therefore, the Tribunal directed the appellant and the second respondent to severally and jointly pay the compensation of Rs.1,25,000/- with interest at the rate of 7.5% from the date of petition. Aggrieved by the same, the present Civil Miscellaneous Appeal has been preferred by the appellant herein.7. The learned counsel for the appellant/Insurance Company submitted that the insurance policy was not marked before the Tribunal. The second respondent herein fabricated the insurance policy, as if issued by the appellant herein and the Tribunal awarded the compensation payable by the appellant herein. Therefore, the appellant also filed a review application to review the award passed by the Tribunal. She further submitted that the vehicle owned by the second respondent herein was originally insured with the United India Insurance Company from 30.03.2011 to 29.03.2012. Thereafter, he approached the appellant/Insurance Company only on 07.04.2012 and issued a cheque for new insurance policy for the bus. Though the cheque was cleared on 07.04.2012, the insurance policy was fabricated as if it was issued from 30.03.2012.to 29.03.2013. In the Review Petition, both the policy were marked as Ex.P.1 and Ex.P.2. The Ex.P.2 is the original insurance policy valid from 04.04.2012 to 03.04.2013, whereas the accident took place on 02.04.2012. Therefore, the appellant/Insurance Company is not liable to pay any compensation as awarded by the claims Tribunal. In this regard, a complaint was also lodged and it is pending on the file of the Special Investigation Team. However, the Court below dismissed the Review petition.8. Per contra, the learned counsel for the second respondent/owner of the vehicle submitted that the bus owned by the second respondent was duly insured with the United India Insurance Company and it was valid from 30.03.2011 to 29.03.2012. Thereafter, the second respondent approached the appellant herein for the new insurance policy and issued the cheque bearing No.65157 for a sum of Rs.31,322/- for insuring his bus. It was duly received by the appellant and the policy was valid for the period from 30.03.2012 to 29.03.2013. In fact, the cheque was also duly encashed by the appellant and the cheque amount was cleared from the second respondent's account on 07.04.2012. The cheque was issued on 29.03.2012 and it was presented later. However, the cheque was issued on 29.03.2012 and it was encahsed by the appellant herein. After a period of one year from the date of award, the appellant raised the plea that the insurance policy issued to the second respondent's offending vehicle is a forged one. In the counter filed in the claim petition also they did not even whisper about the insurance policy as alleged in the review petition. That part, the said insurance policy was not marked before the claims Tribunal. Only on the policy details and counter filed by the appellant herein, the Tribunal awarded the compensation and directed to pay compensation as per the policy. Only to escape from the clutches of law, the appellant now came with a new plea that the insurance policy itself is fabricated one. He also filed the insurance policy, which was issued by the appellant dated 03.04.2012 before this Court.9. The learned counsel for the first respondent/claimant submitted that insofar as the insurance policy is concerned, it was not marked before the Tribunal. Only on the policy details, the Tribunal awarded the compensation and directed the appellant as well as the second respondent herein to severally and jointly pay the compensation to the claimant with interest at the rate of 7.5%. The appellant did not even whisper about the fabrication of policy in their counter before the Tribunal. After a period of one year, in order to avoid the payment of compensation to the claimant, the appellant raised the present plea of fabrication of the policy. He further submitted that though the appellant lodged the complaint, even till today no enquiry was conducted and pendency of the complaint is not an impediment for the claimant to receive the compensation.10. Heard both sides.11. The appellant/Insurance Company is the second respondent in the claim petition and the second respondent is the owner of the vehicle, which caused the accident. Due to the accident, the first respondent/claimant herein sustained multiple and grievous injuries with fractures and as such, the Tribunal awarded a sum of Rs.1,25,000/- as compensation with interest at the rate of 7.5% from the date of petition. The award was passed on 19.03.2014. After a period of two years, the appellant herein filed a review petition to review the judgment and decree passed by the Tribunal on the ground that the insurance policy of the second respondent's vehicle was fabricated one and on the date of accident viz., on 02.04.2012, there was no policy for the offending vehicle. The policy was issued on 03.04.2012, which was valid from 04.04.2012 to 03.04.2013. It was marked as Ex.P.2. The alleged fabricated policy was marked as Ex.P.1, it reveals that Ex.P.1 is the policy valid from 30.03.2012 to 29.03.2013, which was issued on 03.04.2012.12. On a perusal of the typed set filed by the second respondent herein, it reveals that the second respondent's vehicle was originally insured with the United India Insurance Company valid from 30.03.2011 to 29.03.2012. On the date of expiry, the second respondent approached the appellant herein for new policy and issued the cheque for a sum of Rs.31,322/- and the same was duly enchased by the appellant on 07.04.2012. It might be presented for collection one day or two days before 07.04.2012 and the amount was deducted from the second respondent's account on 07.04.2012. Normally, the Insurance Company will issue policy after commencing the date of validity of the policy. Accordingly, the appellant/Insurance Company received a cheque from the second respondent dated 29.03.2013 and was issued policy on 03.04.2012 and the policy was valid from 30.03.2012 to 29.03.2013. Therefore, at the time of accident viz., on 02.04.2012, the vehicle owned by the second respondent was duly insured with the appellant/Insurance Company and as such, the Tribunal rightly directed the appellant to pay the compensation. Hence, this Court finds no infirmity or illegality in the orde

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r passed by the Court below.13. Accordingly, this Civil Miscellaneous Appeal is dismissed. No costs. However, if the investigation reveals that the insurance policy, which was produced by the second respondent in favour of the appellant herein, is a fabricated one, the appellant is at liberty to recover the compensation from the second respondent. The Insurance Company shall deposit the entire compensation amount, along with interests and costs, as awarded by the Claims Tribunal, less the amount already deposited, if any, within a period of six weeks, from the date of receipt of a copy of this judgment. On such deposit being made, the Tribunal is directed to transfer the deposited amount to the Savings Bank Account of the claimant herein, within one week thereafter, through RTGS. Consequently, connected MP is closed.14. In view of the order passed in C.M.A.No.1612 of 2019, this Civil Revision Petition is also dismissed. Consequently, the connected Miscellaneous Petition is closed. No costs.
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