NEW INDIA ASSURANCE CO LTD Vs. NAFIS AHMED ABDUL RAZAQ ANSARI & ORS
LAWS(GJH)-2014-5-85
HIGH COURT OF GUJARAT
Decided on May 09,2014

NEW INDIA ASSURANCE CO LTD Appellant
VERSUS
Nafis Ahmed Abdul Razaq Ansari And Ors Respondents

JUDGEMENT

- (1.) Feeling aggrieved and dissatisfied with the impugned judgment and award passed by the learned Motor Accident Claims Tribunal, Navsari (hereinafter referred to as 'the Tribunal') dated 28.11.2013 passed in Motor Accident Claim Petition No.238 of 2009 by which the learned Tribunal has held the appellant insurance company also liable to pay the compensation for the death of deceased Balwantbhai Rayabhai Patel, the appellant insurance company original opponent No.3 has preferred the present first appeal.
(2.) At the outset, it is required to be noted that the appeal has been filed solely on the ground that as the driver of the vehicle involved in the accident was having a fake driving licence, the insurance company cannot be fastened with the liability to pay the compensation. It is the case on behalf of the appellant that as the driving licence of the driver of the vehicle involved in the accident was fake, there was a violation of the terms of the insurance policy and therefore the insurance company is not liable to pay the compensation.
(3.) Shri Vibhuti Nanavati, learned advocate appearing on behalf of the appellant insurance company has vehemently submitted that as such the appellant insurance company has sufficiently discharged the burden to establish and prove that the original opponent No.1 driver of the vehicle involved in the accident was having a fake driving licence. It is submitted that the appellant insurance company has examined the concerned R.T.O. Inspector at Exh.65 in which the R.T.O. Inspector has specifically stated that the driving licence of opponent No.1 has not been issued by the R.T.O., Muradabad, Utter Pradesh and the same is in the name of some other person and therefore the same is found to be faked. It is submitted that therefore when the opponent No.1 was holding a fake driving licence, there is violation of the condition of the insurance policy and therefore the insurance company cannot be held liable to pay the compensation. It is therefore submitted that the learned Tribunal has materially erred in holding the appellant insurance company liable to pay the compensation. Shri Nanavati, leanred advocate appearing on behalf of the appellant insurance company has heavily relied upon the decision of the Hon'ble Supreme Court in the case of United India Insurance Co. Ltd. through its Divisional Manager v. Sujata Arora, 2013 3 TAC 29. It is submitted that in the said decision the Hon'ble Supreme Court has observed and held that when the vehicle involved in the accident is driven by a person who did not have a valid licence, there is violation of conditions of the insurance policy and therefore the insurance company cannot be held liable to pay the compensation. He has also heavily relied upon the decisions of the Hon'ble Supreme Court in the case of Jawahar Singh v. Bala Jain & Ors., 2011 AIR(SC) 2436 as well as in the case of National Insurance Company Limited v. Laxmi Narain Dhut, 2007 AIR(SC) 1563 the decisions which have been referred to and considered by the Hon'ble Supreme Court in the aforesaid decision of Sujata Arora .;


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