If the Driver of the offending vehicle does not have the valid license then, it amounts to breach of conditions of the policy

As per the latest judgment from Gujarat High Court, whereby HC has allowed the appeal of insurance company and exonerated from the liability.  Case of Passenger of Rickshaw.  Driver of Insured vehicle was not holding any type of DL at the time of accident.  As per 161 statement of Driver, he has admitted that he was not holding any type of DL. Insurer has produced the certified copy of that statement and argued the matter.  Tribunal has saddled liability on insurance company by observing that insurance company has not examined IO as well as Driver to prove the breach of terms and conditions of the policy.

Observation from HC:

“In view of the above discussion, it becomes very clear that respondent no.2 was not holding any license at the time of the accident and it amounted to breach of conditions of policy of insurance. The learned Tribunal without properly examining the documentary evidence available on the record doubted the statement of respondent no.2 only on the ground that it appeared to have been recorded prior to the date of accident without actually reading the statement in its entirety.

Under the circumstances, the impugned judgment and award of the Tribunal requires interference so far as the liability of payment of compensation is fastened on the appellant insurance company. It becomes vividly clear from the evidence on record that the Driver of the offending vehicle did not have the valid license and therefore it amounts to breach of conditions of the policy.

For the foregoing reasons, the appeals succeed and they are hereby allowed. The impugned judgment and award dated 31st July 2013 passed by the learned 5th Additional District Judge, Ahmedabad (Rural) at Mirzapur in MAC Petition No.368 of 2001 to 373 of 2001, is hereby modified and the appellant insurance company is hereby exonerated from its liability to make the payment of compensation.

The insurance company shall be at liberty to recover the amount withdrawn by the claimants pursuant to the order of this Court from the Tribunal and owner of the insured vehicle in accordance with law. It is made clear that whatever amount of interest is withdrawn by the claimants would not be recovered by the insurance company from the claimants. The amount lying with the Tribunal in the FDRs shall be refunded to the appellant insurance company.”

 

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