The motor accidents claims tribunal (MACT) held the driver of Pinjore-based HMT Limited guilty of crushing a motorcyclist under a bus while overtaking and directed the company as well as the driver to pay Rs 22.81 lakh to the kin of the accident victim.
The tribunal presided over by additional district and sessions judge Najar Singh directed HMT Limited, Pinjore (owner of the bus), Suraj Pal Singh (driver of the bus) hailing from Moradabad and Oriental Insurance Company Limited (insurer of the bus) to “jointly and severally” pay the compensation amount along with 7.5% interest.
Based on testimony of the eyewitness and the postmortem report, the tribunal held, “The accident was caused due to sole negligence of Suraj Pal Singh, while driving bus owned by HMT Limited and insured with Oriental Insurance Company Limited.
Thus, they are jointly and severally liable to pay the compensation to six members of the accident victim.”
The amount would be shared by six family members of the victim, Baljinder Singh, a resident of Mariwala Town, Manimajra, including his aged parents, his wife and three children.
On January 3, 2013, Baljinder Singh (43), a milk seller and an agriculturist, had gone to pay obeisance at a Peer Baba mosque in Panchkula.
When he and one Charanjit Singh, the eyewitness, were returning from the mosque on their respective motorcycles, the bus came in rash and negligent manner and after overtaking Charanjit’s motorcycle hit Baljinder’s motorcycle, while going ahead of him.
Baljinder’s head was crushed under the front wheel of the bus leaving him dead.
The accused in the case alleged that the accident had caused due to the negligence of Baljinder Singh himself, as he was driving his motorcycle rashly.
Oriental Insurance Company Limited said they were not liable to pay the compensation as the driver Suraj Pal Singh was not holding a valid and effective driving licence, and the vehicle was being plied in utter violation of terms and conditions of the insurance policy.