Decided on April 25,1978

Shashikanta Nayak Respondents


R.N.Misra, J. - (1.) THIS is an appeal under Section 110 -D of the Motor Vehicles Act against the award of compensation to the Respondent.
(2.) A private carrier truck bearing registration number ORD 211 owned by the Orissa State Electricity Board (Appellant) was going on the Barchana -Darpan road in the afternoon of 15.11.1974. The Respondent, a young boy of 14, was proceeding towards Darpan on cycle. A claim was lodged for compensation of Rs. 50,000/ - on his behalf by his father -guardian on the allegation that the truck dashed against the cyclist and as a result of this collision, the claimant's right hand had to be amputated from the shoulder joint. The Board admitted that there was a collision but maintains that it happened on account of negligence on the part of the cyclist and the driver had no responsibility for it. The condition of the road, it is alleged, was not good and the truck was, therefore, being driven at a slow speed. The claimant came from the opposite direction carrying another boy on his back and was not able to control the cycle. He lost balance on account of morrow having been spread on the road. The person sitting behind him jumped down as a result of which there was a jolt and the claimant fell down on his right side. As a result of such fall, the rear wheel of the truck ran over a part of his body. On these allegations, Appellant denied its liability in toto.
(3.) FOUR witnesses in all were examined in support of the claim while three witnesses were examined on behalf of the owner of the truck. The Tribunal found that the evidence of P.Ws. 1 and 2 did not throw any light about the manner of the accident, P.W. 3 is the claimant himself while P.W. 4 is his father. On the claimant's side the evidence as to how the accident happened is confined to the claimant. According to the claimant he was returning from Barchana to Dhanmandal by cycle and was carrying a friend Alekh by name on the carrier of the cycle. As he was proceeding, he saw the truck coming from the opposite side. He asked Alekh to get down and he did so at a time when the truck was still 300 cubits away. According to the claimant he was going on his left. While the truck came close, it suddenly moved towards the right side to allow certain persons on the road to pass and when it moved to the right side, its front side came in contact with the bicycle as a result of which he fell down. The truck ran over a part of his body and he became unconscious. His hand had to be amputated from almost the shoulder joint. He also sustained some head injuries. He has admitted in cross -examination that the road was bad and morrum had been spread. The defence case that Alekh jumped from the cycle after the front portion of the truck had already crossed the cyclist and on account of such jumping the claimant lost his balance was put to the claimant, but he has denied it.;

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