Madras High Court
Madras High Court
Litigation News

Madras HC expresses shock after accident victim who claimed Rs 36 lakhs gets awarded over Rs 86 lakhs by MACT [Read Order]

Meera Emmanuel

The Madras High Court recently expressed shock over a MACT ruling that resulted in the award of over Rs 86 lakhs as compensation for a motor accident award, when the victim himself had restricted his claim to Rs 36 lakhs (National Insurance Company Limited v. P.Rammohan and ors.).

In computing this figure, the Coimbatore Motor Accident Claims Tribunal (MACT) had estimated that the claimant was entitled to over Rs 33 lakhs under the head of loss of future earning capacity alone.

In an appeal challenging this ruling, the insurance company pointed out that the award was made without examining anyone, either on the claimant’s side or experts to discern the degree of the claimant’s disability owing to the accident. It was argued that the unreasonable, exorbitant and fanciful award of over Rs 85 lakhs was granted without any reasons.

Moreover, the Court was informed that this was not an isolated case of such unreasoned awards being passed. Rather, it was pointed out that the Madras High Court had pulled up the Presiding officer of this Tribunal last January for awarding huge amounts of compensation without any rhyme or reason.

In this regard, it was also highlighted that, at the time, the High Court had made adverse remarks against the order passed by the special sub-judge, R Venkatasubramanian and directed that the same be part of his Annual Confidential Report.

Taking note of these submissions, the Division Bench of Justices R Subbiah and R Pongiappan proceeded to set aside the MACT ruling and remanded the matter back to the Tribunal for fresh consideration, while observing,

“We find some force in the submissions made by the learned counsel for the appellant/Insurance Company. The amount awarded by the Tribunal under the head "future loss of earning capacity", shocks the conscience of this Court.”
Madras High Court

The insurance company/appellant was represented by Advocate N Vijayaraghavan, whereas the Advocate C Deivasigamani appeared for a respondent.

Read the Order:

National Insurance Company Limited v. P.Rammohan and ors.pdf

The same Tribunal in Coimbatore was pulled up by the High Court last month as well, when an “unbelievable”, unreasoned award of Rs 35 lakhs was found to have been awarded as compensation under the head “loss of love and affection” in a motor accident case.

Noting that this was not the first time such an error had been made, the Bench of Justices MM Sundaresh and Krishnan Ramasamy had also ordered the initiation of departmental proceedings against the Presiding Officer of the Tribunal.

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