Tribunal awards Rs 61-lakh compensation to mishap victims’ families
Two years after driver of a tractor trolley parked the vehicle on the GT Road without any indicators, leading to an accident leaving three persons dead and three others injured, the motor accidents claims tribunal (MACT) directed the driver and owner of the vehicle and insurance firm to pay Rs 61.88 lakh as compensation along with 7.5% interest to victims’ families.
As per the tribunal directives, the money would be paid by Bhopal Singh, a resident of Sonepat, Haryana, who is the tractor trolley’s owner and driver, and National Insurance Company Limited. The amount would be distributed among six families whose members were either killed or injured in the accident.
On June 2, 2013, Neeraj alias Bunti along with two-three families of Chandigarh was going from Chandigarh to Nanded (Hazur Sahib) via Delhi in a Force Tempo Traveler, which was being driven by Baljinder Singh.
Neeraj was sitting on the side seat/cleaner seat of the Tempo Traveler and Roshan Lal, Sadhu, Pooja, Paramjit, Sharwan Singh and some of their family members were aboard the vehicle.
Early morning on June 2 at about 4am, when they reached Sonepat district on the Amritsar to Delhi GT Road, NH-1, their Tempo Traveller hit a stationary tractor trolley. The tractor trolley was loaded with sand and was stationed in the lane number 1 on a metelled stretch of the GT Road with its front side facing towards Delhi.
The tractor trolley was parked without taking any precautions or indicators such as placing bricks, stone, branches of tree, safety cones, reflectors, burning of fire, any watch or taking any such measure. Baljinder could not notice the stationery tractor trolley leading to the mishap.
As a result, Neeraj and Sarwan suffered multiple, simple and grievous injuries and both died on the spot. Baljinder and other passengers were taken to general hospital at Sonepat by the highway police patrol.
Tractor trolley’s owner-cum-driver Bhopal denied allegations of rash driving or negligence on his part. He said he was carrying sand to his fields, when one of the tyres burst and the tractor came to an abrupt halt. He alleged that the tempo traveller (PB01-A-3868) had hit the rear portion of the tractor.
National Insurance Company Limited submitted that the tractor trolley was being used for a purpose not permitted under the policy. The vehicle was insured for use for agricultural purposes whereas, it was being used for commercial purposes.
WHO WILL GET HOW MUCH
The family of Neeraj alias Bunti (28), resident of Sector 22, who had died on the spot, would get Rs 36.67 lakh as compensation, along with 7.5% interest.
The family of another victim, Sarwan Singh, a resident of Sector 22, who worked as driver with the PWD, Punjab, would get Rs 15.09 lakh as compensation with 7.5% interest. Family of Sadhu Singh (58), an agriculturist and a resident of Sector 44, who had succumbed to injuries on June 4, 2013, would be paid Rs 7.07 lakh, while his widow Jasbir Kaur (55), who too had sustained injuries in the accident, would be paid Rs 2.22 lakh with interest. Raj Rani (52) who also sustained injuries would be paid Rs 42,000 with 7.5% interest and Pooja Garg (25), another injured, would be paid Rs 40,000.