HINDUSTHAN GENERAL INSURANCE SOCIETY LIMITED Vs. P R NARSA REDDI
HIGH COURT OF ANDHRA PRADESH
HINDUSTHAN GENERAL INSURANCE SOCIETY LTD.
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(1.) This is an appeal against the judgment of the Motor Accidents Tribunal awarding damages of Rs. 3,000.00 to the respondent. There was a motor accident on 18-5-1963 when the motor car bearing No. MYE 2525 hit in the respondent while he was going on a cycle. He received injuries one of which was grievous and it resulted in the deformity of the leg. He filed and application under Section 110 of the Motor Vehicles Act to recover compensation of Rs. 6,000.00 from the respondents to that application. The first respondents to that application. The first respondent claimed that he had sold the car in May. 1963 to the second Respondent and that he was (not?) liable to pay any damages. The second respondent remained ex parte. The third respondent the Insurance Company, took the plea that the car was insured by the first respondent and that as the vehicle had been transferred to the second respondent without the policy itself being transferred, the Insurance Company was not liable to pay any damages. The Tribunal held that the driver of the vehicle was negligent and the accident was the result of his negligence. The Tribunal also held that the sale of the car by the first respondent to the second respondent was not established and therefore the first respondent as well as the second respondent were also liable. This Appeal is by the Insurance Company.
(2.) Sri T. Veerabhadrayya, learned counsel for the appellant Company urges that the Tribunal was wrong in holding that the sale of the car to the second respondent had not been established. He urged that the sale was proved by the evidence of R. W. 1, the delivery receipt Ex. B-1 and the entries in the account books of the first respondent. The Tribunal places strong reliance on the circumstances that notwithstanding the fact that the receipt Ex. B-1 mentions the date of transfer as 13-5-1963 neither the counter of the first respondent nor the counter of the third respondent mentions the date of transfer. The first and third respondents wee content to say that the transfer was in May, 1963. No explanation was offered as to why the date of transfer was not mentioned in either of the counters though the delivery receipt was always available with the first respondent and though according to the first respondent there were entries in his accounts to establish the transaction. The circumstances pointed out by the Tribunal is a suspicious circumstances which throws doubt on the genuineness of the receipt as well as the entries in the accounts. The Tribunal further relied on the circumstances that neither the first respondent nor the second respondent intimated the transfer to the Regional Transport Officer in order to get the C certificate transferred. Sri T. Veerabhadrayya urge that the law provides 14 days time for getting the C certificate. It may be that the law allows 14 days time, but the Tribunal was certainly entitled to take that circumstances into account. Sri. T. Veerabhadriah urges that R. W. 1 was not cross-examined with reference to the accounts. That was for the simple reason that the account books were produced in the course of the re-examination of the witness and it was unnecessary to cross-examine the witness with reference to the account books as the witness had already been cross-examined with reference to the receipt and what applied to the receipt also applied to the account books. The witness had already been asked whether the transfer was reported to the Regional Transport Officer and whether they applied for refund of the premium for the lapsed policy. As stated by me earlier, the failure of the respondents to mention the date of the transfer in the counters renders both the receipt and the accounts suspicious. I therefore confirm the finding of the Tribunal that the sale by the first respondent in favour of the second respondent in favour of the second respondent had not been established. Even assuming that there was a sale of the vehicle by the first respondent in favour of the second respondent on 13-5-1963 as alleged by the first respondent and the third respondent, the mere transfer of ownership does not necessarily put an end to the does not necessarily put an end to the liability for the Insurance Company; Vide Madras Motor Insurance Company; v. Mohamed Mustafa Badsha, (1960) 2 Mad LJ 202 = (AIR 1961 Mad 208).
(3.) The C. M. A. is therefore dismissed with costs.;
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