The claims department at the Brihanmumbai Electricity Supply and Transport (BEST) undertaking is meant to reimburse citizens for damages caused by its buses, but hardly anyone ever approaches them.
In past three years, the highest number of claims received by the undertaking is 70, in 2010-11, when the numbers of collisions were more than 700. In 2011-12, it was 65 for more than 900 accidents, both major and minor.
So far, BEST has given out about Rs. 7 lakh as claim amounts since 2010.
“Most car owners are not aware of this section within the BEST, and so they don’t approach BEST. Subsequently, they pay from their pockets for repair if insurance company turns down their claim,” said Shirish Deshpande, Mumbai Grahak Panchayat. “The BEST should create awareness about this section so that more people can approach them.
Besides, it will also help them controlling reckless drivers.”
While car owners can approach BEST to recover their losses, they will have to comply with the norms similar to insurance companies.
“The claimant will have to bring a copy of a police complaint, vehicle registration documents, insurance papers and repair bills. Then our staff will conduct an inspection and depending on their assessment, the claim amount will be sanctioned,” said Virendra Bagul, public relations officer, BEST.