Thursday 2 September 2021

Whether petition under S 166 of MV Act can be converted into S 163A MV Act?

 The first contention of the learned counsel for the appellant-insurer is that earlier the legal heirs of the deceased filed a claim petition for compensation under Section 166 of the Act, but subsequently sought permission to convert the said application to one under Section 163-A of the Act, it would amounts to change in the cause of action and the same is not justifiable. 

15. By going through the above said decision, it goes to show that conversion of the application from 166 to 163-A would amounts to change in the cause of action and the Tribunal was not justified in allowing such change. But in the decision of Guruanna Vadi and another Vs. General Manager, Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation and another reported in 2001 ACJ 1528, this Court has held that during the pendency of the proceedings filed under Section 166 of the Act, the petitioner can amend the said petition to convert into 163-A of the Act provided, if other conditions are satisfied. For the purpose of brevity, I extract paragraphs No.36 and 37, which reads as under:

36. The only bar provided for exercising an option in the matter of filing a claim petition for compensation is to be found in section 163-B which states, "where a person is entitled to claim compensation under section 140 and section 163-A, he shall file the claim under either of the said sections and not under both". There is no prohibition in any other provision of the Act from switching over the claim made under section 166 to section 163-A provided the accident took place on 14.11.94 or thereafter, because section 163-A came on the statute book only with effect from 14.11.94; subject, of course, to the claimants satisfying other requirements such as the outer income limit mentioned in the Second Schedule. Section 163-A is

beneficial legislation and provides for payment of compensation based on structured formula without requiring pleading or establishing that the death or permanent disability in respect of which the claim has been made was due to any wrongful act or negligence or default of the owner of the vehicle or vehicles concerned or any other person. Such a beneficial legislation has to be given a liberal interpretation. Therefore, we answer this question in the affirmative by holding that a claimant can move the court for amendment of his claim petition filed under section 166 to that of a petition under section 166-A at any stage of the proceedings and it would be for the concerned court to pass an order on that application in accordance with law.

Karnataka High Court
Rama Bommayya Naik vs Anilkumar Ayyappan Pillai on 22 March, 2018

Author: B.A.Patil
Read full judgment here: Click here
Print Page

No comments:

Post a Comment