Decided on August 09,1984

Chhuttan Khan Appellant
Soni Devi And Ors. Respondents


Guman Mal Lodha, J. - (1.)THIS appeal has been filed by Chhuttan Khan and Pep Singh, the owner and driver of bus No. RJR 1155 against whom, the claim of the Applicants, Soni Devi, Ashok, Kamla Bai, Usha Bai, Prem and Sher Singh, all dependents of the deceased Babulal has been accepted, granting compensation to the extent of Rs. 25,000/ -. Babulal died, in an accident which took place on 17th March, 1970 involving bus No. RJR 1155 when it was going from Jaipur to Chomu.
(2.)THE Motor Accidents Claims Tribunal has found that the accident took place on account of rash and negligent driving of the bus which was being driven by Pep Singh. The Tribunal has also exonerated the insurance company i.e., New India Assurance Company Limited on the ground that it has not been proved that at the relevant time and date, the vehicle was insured.
The bus owner has filed this appeal and Mr. K.N. Tikku, the learned Counsel for the Appellants, has submitted that, firstly, the negligence and rashness was not proved and therefore, no award should have been given. It was also argued in the alternative that the insurance company should have been made liable in case, the finding of the Tribunal regarding rashness and negligence is accepted by this Court.

(3.)MR . S.C. Srivastava, appearing on behalf of the Respondent No. 7, the insurance company, has vehemently opposed the appeal so far as the liability of the insurance company is concerned. So far as the question of rashness and negligence is concerned, I find that the finding of the Tribunal is well sustained in as much as the evidence produced by the claimants is sufficient to show that the bus was being driven at a very high speed. In this connection, the statement of Rameshwarlal has remained unchallenged. In the examination -in -chief, he said that the bus was being driven at a very high speed and in respect of this aspect of the case, no cross -examination was done. Mr. Tikku pointed out that the accident took place on account of the fact that the tie -rod of the bus had suddenly broken and that was a mechnical failure, the driver or owner of the vehicle cannot be held responsible. Surprisingly enough, no such suggestion was made to Rameshwarlal in cross -examination. Contrary to it, it was suggested that the tyre of the vehicle burst and on account of that, accident took place. I am, therefore, not prepared to disturb the finding of the Tribunal in this respect so far as issue No. 1 is concerned.

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