The Himachal Pradesh High Court has expressed concern over delay in settling motor accident claims, and directed the state police chief to ensure that accident reports are sent to the claims tribunal within 30 days.
The court also directed the tribunal to treat the police report as a claim petition, even if a claim petition is not filed.
"Police and the claims tribunal are not fulfilling their legal obligation under the Motor Vehicles Act, according to which it is mandatory for the officer in charge of the police station concerned to forward a copy of the report of any accident involving death or injury to any person to the claims tribunal and insurer within 30 days," Chief Justice Mansoor Ahmad Mir said Friday.
The tribunal should treat this report as an application for compensation under the Act, he said.
Justice Mir said that after hearing several such cases, he observed that neither police nor the claims tribunal were following the mandate of the Motor Vehicles Act, the purpose of which was that poor people do not suffer unnecessarily and get compensation as early as possible.
He cautioned the authorities that any departure from the directions would be viewed seriously.