Supreme Court of India
Asha Verman & Ors vs Maharaj Singh & Ors on 27 March, 2015Bench: V. Gopala Gowda, C. Nagappan
IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION
CIVIL APPEAL NOS.3211-3212 OF 2015
(Arising out of SLP(C) NOS. 1668-1669 of 2014)
ASHA VERMAN & ORS …APPELLANTS
MAHARAJ SINGH & ORS. …RESPONDENTS
J U D G M E N T
V. GOPALA GOWDA, J.
These appeals have been filed by the appellants against the final
judgment and order dated 22.02.2013 passed by the High Court of Madhya
Pradesh at Jabalpur in M.A. No.480 of 2008, wherein the High Court partly
allowed the appeal of the appellants and dismissed the review petition
No.256 of 2013 dated 21.6.2013.
The necessary relevant facts are stated hereunder to appreciate the case
with a view to determine whether the appellants are entitled for
enhancement of compensation amount as prayed in these appeals?
On 27.11.2006, Jhabbu Verman, aged 35 years, was on his way back from
Tripuri to Garha (Jabalpur) on his motorcycle bearing registration No. MP-
20-Y-7669 and met with an accident when a truck bearing registration No. MP-
20-GA-2221 being driven by respondent No.1 rashly and negligently collided
with the back of his motorcycle. As a result of the same, Jhabbu Verman
fell towards his right and the wheel of the vehicle ran over his hands
which lead to severe damage to his left hand. Due to the grievous injuries
caused in the said accident, he was immediately taken to the Mahakaushal
College and Hospital and he remained under medical treatment from
28.11.2006, during which period he underwent an operation and plastic
surgery twice on his chest and was advised for amputation of his left hand.
However, due to the severity of injuries caused to him in the accident,
Jhambu Verman died on 08.12.2006.
A claim petition under Section 166 of the Motor Vehicle Act, 1988 was
filed on 06.01.2007 before the Motor Accidents Claims Tribunal (for short
‘the Tribunal’), at Jabalpur, M.P. by the appellant No.1 – wife of the
deceased, appellant Nos.2 & 3 – minor children of the deceased, appellant
Nos. 4 & 5-parents of the deceased, claiming Rs.31,70,000/- as compensation
for loss caused due to the death of Jhambu Verman.
The Tribunal after considering the facts, circumstances and evidence on
record of the case on hand, passed an Award dated 08.10.2007 by awarding a
total compensation of Rs.3,75,500/- at an interest rate of 6.5% per annum
to the appellants.
Aggrieved by the insufficient compensation awarded by the Tribunal in
its Award, the appellants preferred an Appeal before the High Court of
Madhya Pradesh at Jabalpur for enhancement of compensation urging various
grounds. The High Court after examining the facts, circumstances and
evidence on record enhanced the amount to a total compensation of
Rs.5,35,000/- under all heads with interest at the rate of 8% per annum.
The following is the breakup of compensation under various heads awarded by
the High Court:-
Loss of dependency – Rs. 4,50,000/-
Funeral Expenses – Rs. 5,000/-
Loss of estate – Rs. 5,000/-
Loss of consortium – Rs. 5,000/-
Loss of love – Rs. 20,000/-
Towards pecuniary – Rs. 50,000/-
TOTAL – Rs. 5,35,000/-
The appellants filed a review petition before the High Court which was
dismissed on 21.06.2013. The appellants have challenged both the orders by
filing special leave for enhancement of the compensation amount.
It has been contended by the learned counsel for the appellants that the
High Court has wrongly assessed the monthly salary at Rs.3,500/- per month
and failed to appreciate that the deceased was 35 years of age and was
working as a technician at Mahakaushal Hospital and that he was getting a
salary of Rs.4617/- per month. Further, it is contended that the High Court
failed to appreciate that Rajnikant Tiwari (PW-3), Occupation Manager,
Mahakaushal Hospital, Jabalpur, has stated that the deceased was an
operation theatre technician at the Hospital and was getting a salary of
Rs.4,600/- per month. Further, the courts below failed to consider the
legal principles laid down by this Court with respect to calculation of
future prospects of income of the deceased in the case of Sarla Verma v.
DTC, according to which case 50% of the actual salary is to be added to
the income of the deceased if he is in a permanent job and below the age of
40 years. Therefore, it is contended that on applying the said principles
laid down by this Court in the above said case, the income of the deceased
for calculation of loss of dependency should be taken at Rs.6,900/- [Rs.
4,600/- + 50% of Rs. 4,600/-].
It is further contended by him that the deduction towards personal and
living expenses of the deceased should be one-fourth by applying the law
laid down in Sarla Verma (supra) and not one-third as taken by the courts
It is further contended by him that the High Court has failed to appreciate
that the wife of the deceased spent about Rs.1,40,000/- on medical
treatment of her husband(deceased) and bills for Rs.1,23,630/- for
treatment have been produced in support of the same.
On the other hand, it has been contended by the learned counsel for the
respondent No.3-Insurance Company that the High Court already enhanced the
just and reasonable compensation after examining the facts and
circumstances of the case and evidence on record and therefore, submitted
that the appellants are not entitled for further enhancement of
compensation as claimed in these appeals.
It is further contended by the learned counsel on behalf of the Insurance
Company that the High Court has rightly upheld the observation made by the
Tribunal that no cogent evidence has been adduced to prove that the
deceased was in a permanent job and was getting salary of Rs.4,617/- per
Further, it is contended by him that the Tribunal has rightly disbelieved
the bills of Rs.1,23,630/- as Ex. P11 alleged to be spent on the treatment
of deceased and the same has been duly considered by the High Court. Hence,
the impugned judgment does not require interference by this Court.
We have heard the learned counsel for both the parties and also examined
the facts and circumstances of the case and the evidence on record.
We are of the considered view that the courts below have erred in the
calculation of loss of dependency by wrongly ascertaining the income of the
deceased at the time of his death. It is clear that the deceased at the
time of his death was working in the operation theatre as a technician in
the permanent post at the Hospital and was earning Rs.4,617/- per month
(rounded off to Rs.4,600/-). On applying the principles as laid down in the
case of Sarla Verma (supra), 50% of the salary must be added to the income
of the deceased towards future prospects of income, which comes to
Rs.6,900/- per month, i.e. Rs.82,800/- per annum. Deducting 1/4th for
personal expenses and applying the appropriate multiplier taking into
consideration the age of the deceased at the time of his death as per Sarla
Verma (supra), the total loss of dependency comes to Rs.9,93,600/-
[(Rs.82,800/- (-) 1/4 X Rs.82,800/-)X 16].
Further, Rs.1,40,000/- was spent by the appellant-wife for medical purposes
of her husband(deceased) during the period of treatment before his death.
Accordingly, we award an amount of Rs.1,40,000/- towards medical expenses
incurred for the treatment of the deceased.
Further, the High Court has erred in awarding only Rs. 5,000/- each towards
loss of estate, funeral expenses and loss of consortium. We award
Rs.1,00,000/- towards loss of estate according to the principles laid down
in the case of Kalpanaraj & Ors. v. Tamil Nadu State Transport
Corporation, Rs.25,000/- towards funeral expenses and Rs.1,00,000/-
towards loss of consortium as per the principles laid down by this Court in
the case of Rajesh & Ors. v. Rajbir Singh & Ors.
Further, we award Rs.1,00,000/- each to the appellant-children towards loss
of love and affection due to the loss of their father(deceased) as per the
decision of this Court in the case of Juju Kuruvila & Ors. v. Kunjujamma
Mohan & Ors.. Further, a sum of Rs.50,000/- is awarded to each of the
appellant-parents towards loss of love and affection of their deceased son
as per the principles laid down by this Court in the case of M. Mansoor &
Anr v. United India Insurance Co. Ltd..
Further, the High Court has erred in awarding an interest at the rate of 8%
per annum only, instead of 9% per annum on the compensation amount as per
the principles laid by this Court in the case of Municipal Corporation of
Delhi v. Association of Victims of Uphaar Tragedy. We accordingly award
an interest at the rate of 9% per annum on the compensation amount.
In the result, the appellant shall be entitled to compensation under
the following heads:
|1. |Loss of dependency |Rs.9,93,600/- |
|2. |Loss of estate |Rs.1,00,000/- |
|3. |Loss of consortium |Rs.1,00,000/- |
|4. |Loss of love and affection |Rs.2,00,000/- |
| |to children | |
|5. |Funeral expenses |Rs.25,000/- |
|6. |Medical expenses |Rs.1,40,000/- |
|7. |Loss of love and affection |Rs.1,00,000/- |
| |to parents | |
| |TOTAL |Rs. 16,58,600/- |
Further, though all the appellants are legally entitled for equal share of
Rs.1,98,720/- (Rs.9,93,600/- divided by 5) each out of the compensation
awarded towards loss of dependency, however, by keeping in mind the age of
the parents of the deceased and also the future educational requirements of
the minor-children of the deceased, we are of the view that the parents of
the deceased shall be entitled to 1 lakh each out of the total compensation
amount awarded towards loss of dependency and the remaining part of their
share (i.e. Rs.98,720/- each) shall be equally divided and added to the
appellant-minors’ share of compensation. Therefore the following is the
apportionment of the amount awarded towards loss of dependency of the
appellants with proportionate interest:
Appellant No.1 – Rs. 1,98,720/-
Appellant No.2 – Rs. 2,97,440/-
Appellant No.3 – Rs. 2,97,440/-
Appellant No.4 – Rs. 1,00,000/-
Appellant No.5 – Rs. 1,00,000/-
Thus, the total compensation payable to the appellants by the respondent-
Insurance Company will be Rs. 16,58,600/- with interest at the rate of 9%
p.a. from the date of filing of the application till the date of payment.
The respondent-Insurance Company is directed to deposit the sum payable to
the appellant-children with proportionate interest awarded by this Court in
fixed deposit in any nationalised bank as per the preference of appellant-
No.1/guardian till the appellant Nos. 2 and 3 attain majority with the
liberty to the mother/guardian to withdraw interest & such amounts for
their education, development and welfare by filing the appropriate
application before the Motor Accidents Claims Tribunal, Jabalpur. The
respondent-Insurance Company shall either pay the remaining compensation
amount by way of demand-draft in favour of the appellant Nos.1, 4 and 5 or
deposit the same with interest as awarded before the Motor Accidents Claims
Tribunal, Jabalpur, after deducting the amount already paid to the
appellants, if any, within six weeks from the date of receipt of the copy
of this judgment.
The appeals are allowed as per the above said directions. No Costs.
March 27, 2015
ITEM NO.1B-For Judgment COURT NO.10 SECTION IVA
S U P R E M E C O U R T O F I N D I A
RECORD OF PROCEEDINGS
C.A.No……./2015 @ SLP (C) No(s). 1668-1669/2014
(Arising out of impugned final judgment and order dated 22/02/2013 in MA
No. 480/2008,21/06/2013 in RP No. 256/2013 passed by the High Court Of M.P
ASHA VERMAN & ORS. Petitioner(s)
MAHARAJ SINGH & ORS. Respondent(s)
Date : 27/03/2015 These petitions were called on for hearing today.
For Petitioner(s) Mr. M.P. Singh, Adv.
Mr. Rajeev Kumar Bansal,Adv.
Mr. Viresh B. Saharya,Adv.
Hon’ble Mr. Justice V.Gopala Gowda pronounced the judgment of
the Bench comprising His Lordship and Hon’ble Mr. Justice C. Nagappan.
The appeals are allowed in terms of the signed Non-Reportable
(VINOD KR. JHA) (MALA KUMARI SHARMA)
COURT MASTER COURT MASTER
(Signed Non-Reportable judgment is placed on the file)
 (2009) 6 SCC 121
  2014 (5) SCALE 479
  (2013) 9 SCC 54
  (2013)9 SCC 166
  2013 (12) SCALE 324
  (2011) 14 SCC 481
|NON REPORTABLE |