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Yadava Kumar vs. The Divisional Manager, National Insurance Co. Ltd. & Another dated 2010-08-31






              CIVIL APPEAL NO.7223 OF 2010

      (Arising out of SLP (Civil) No.1827 of 2010)


Yadava Kumar                                    ..Appellant(s)



The Divisional Manager,
National Insurance Co. Ltd. & Another          ..Respondent(s)

                        J U D G M E N T

1.   Delay condoned.
2.   Leave granted.

3.   Assailing   the    Division    Bench    judgment    of   the


     Karnataka   High     Court    dated    12.8.2009,   whereby


     compensation of Rs.52,000/- granted by the Tribunal


     was enhanced to Rs.72,000/-, this appeal claiming


     higher compensation was filed by the appellant.



4.   The    Hon'ble       High    Court          has    awarded       compensation


     under the following heads:

     1.    Towards pain and suffering: Rs.20,000/-

     2.    Loss     of     income           from       the      period      of


           treatment: Rs.9,000/-

     3.    Towards        medical           expenses,           conveyance,

           nourishing          food     and       attendant       charges:

     4.    Towards loss of amenities: Rs.35,000/-

           Total: Rs.72,000/- + 8% p.a. interest from


           the date of the petition till realization.


5.   The    material       facts      of      the       case    are    that,       the


     appellant, a painter by profession, was 30 years old


     at    the    time    of     sustaining         the      injury    in     a   road


     accident which took place on 24th March 2003 while


     the appellant was standing on the side of Nagavara


     Ring    Road    to    cross      it     from       south    to    north.      The


     offending Tempo bearing No.KA-04-C/6030 came at a


     great speed from west to east and hit the appellant


     as a result of which he fell down and sustained


     several injuries. The appellant was rushed to Al-


     Habeeb       Hospital      where       he    was     treated.      The       claim


     petition was filed on 3rd February, 2006.


6.   About the nature of the injury sustained by the


     appellant, the evidence of PW-2 Dr. S. Ranjanna,


     Orthopaedic Surgeon, Bowring & Lady Curzon Hospital,


     Bangalore   is    very    crucial.   PW-2    examined   the


     appellant on 26.11.05. As per the wound certificate


     and X-ray report of Al-Habeeb Hospital, Bangalore,


     PW-2   noted     that    the   appellant    sustained   the


     following injuries:


        "(1) Fracture of distal end of left radius

        with   fracture of   left ulnar styloid

             (2) Fracture of distal end of right

        radius with mild diastases is Radioulnar

        joint and soft tissue swelling around wrist


7.   Even on examination on 26.11.05,which is after two


     and a half years after the date of incident, PW-2


     found the following injuries on the appellant:


        (1) Deformity of right wrist

        (2) Limitation of right wrist movements by


        (3) Limitation of right forearm movements

            by 30%

        (4) Wasting of right forearm muscles by 3


        (5) Weak Right hand grip

        (6) Limitation of left wrist movement by

        (7) Tenderness over left wrist

        (8) Instability of left in favour of Radio

            ulnar joint

        (9) Weakness of left hand


8.   PW-2   opined    that    in        view   of   the    injuries   the


     appellant cannot perform any hard work, cannot lift


     any weight and cannot perform any work smoothly and


     after referring to various guidelines in manual PW-2


     opined that the appellant has disability of 33% of


     right upper limb and 21% to left upper limb and 20%


     total disability of the whole body. In view of such


     disability, appellant cannot work as a painter and


     cannot do any other manual work also. In cross-


     examination     also    PW-2       admitted    that   even   if   the


     appellant continues his old vocation as a painter,


     he has to do it with difficulty.


9.   Both the Tribunal and the High Court have failed to


     incorporate any thing by way of compensation in the


     category of `loss of future earnings' in spite of


     recognizing the fact that there is disability of 33%


     in the right upper limb, 21% in the left upper limb


     and 20% in respect of the whole body, which does not


     allow the appellant to paint as he did earlier.


10.   The Second Schedule under Section 163A of the Motor


      Vehicles Act, 1988 gives a structured formula for


      the calculation of compensation in accident cases.


      Section 5 of the Schedule deals with disability in


      non-fatal accidents and reads as follows:


      "5. Disability in non-fatal accidents:


            The   following   compensation shall   be

            payable in case of disability to the

            victim arising out of non-fatal accidents:

            Loss of income, if any, for actual period

            of disablement not exceeding fifty two


            PLUS either of the following:-


            (a)      In   case   of   permanent   total

                     disablement the amount payable

                     shall    be    arrived    at    by

                     multiplying the annual loss of

                     income    by     the    Multiplier

                     applicable to the age on the date

                     of determining the compensation,


            (b)      In case of permanent partial

                     disablement such percentage of

                     compensation which would have

                     been payable in the case of

                     permanent total disablement as

                     specified under item (a) above.


                     Injuries deemed   to result   in

                  Permanent Total Disablement/Permanent

                  Partial Disablement and percentage of

                  loss of earning capacity shall be as

                  per   Schedule   I under   Workmen's

                  Compensation Act, 1923."


11.   Thus, the multiplier method is to be applied in


      cases of injuries also and it has been applied in a



      number of accident cases by High Courts and this


12.   This Court in Sunil Kumar Vs. Ram Singh Gaud and


      others - 2008 ACJ 9, awarded compensation in case of


      injury for loss of future earnings and applied the


      multiplier method for calculation of the same. The


      same principle was recognized by this Court in Priya


      Vasant Kalgutkar Vs. Murad Shaikh & Ors. - AIR 2010

      SC 40.

13.   In Mukesh Kumar Sharma Vs. Ramdutt and Ors. - 2006


      ACJ   1792,        Madhya    Pradesh   High   Court    applied    the


      multiplier method keeping in mind the percentage by


      which    the       injured    person's   earning      capacity    was


      reduced.       A    similar    calculation    was     made   by   the


      Division Bench of Karnataka High Court in Syed Nisar


      Ahmed      Vs.       The      Managing    Director,      Bangalore


      Metropolitan Transport Corporation - 2003 5 Karn.

      L.J. 186.

14.   In this case, the appellant has sustained a fracture


      of distal end of left radius with fracture of left


      ulnar styloid process and fracture distal end of


      right radius with mild diastosis and soft tissues


      swelling around wrist joint. The doctor has assessed


      the disability at 33% in respect of the right upper


      limb and 21% towards left upper limb and 20% in


      respect    of   the     whole    body,   which    prevents    the


      appellant from painting in view of multiple injuries


      sustained by him.


15.   The Hon'ble High Court while granting compensation


      refused to award any amount towards loss of future


      earning. Though that point was specifically urged


      before    the   Hon'ble     High   Court,   the   Hon'ble    High


      Court     refused     any   compensation    towards   loss     of


      future earning by, inter alia, holding that:


         "We are of the view that, the said

         submission has no force for the reason

         that, the appellant has not produced an

         iota   of document to substantiate his

16.   We are unable to agree with the aforesaid view of

      the High Court.

17.   While assessing compensation in accident cases, the


      High Court or the Tribunal must take a reasonably


      compassionate view of things. It cannot be disputed


      that the appellant being a painter has to earn his


      livelihood by virtue of physical work. The nature of


      injuries      which    he    admittedly        suffered,     and      about


      which the evidence of PW-2 is quite adequate, amply


      demonstrates      that       carrying        those   injuries         he   is


      bound    to    suffer       loss   of    earning       capacity       as    a


      painter and a consequential loss of income is the

      natural outcome.

18.   It     goes     without       saying     that        in    matters         of


      determination of compensation both the Tribunal and


      the     Court     are        statutorily         charged         with       a


      responsibility of fixing a `just compensation'. It


      is    obviously       true   that   determination           of    a     just


      compensation cannot be equated to a bonanza. At the


      same    time     the     concept        of     `just      compensation'


      obviously suggests application of fair and equitable


      principles and a reasonable approach on the part of


      the Tribunals and Courts. This reasonableness on the


      part of the Tribunal and Court must be on a large


      peripheral field. Both the Courts and Tribunals in

      the    matter of this exercise should be guided by

      principles of good conscience so that the ultimate


      result become just and equitable (See Mrs. Helen C.


      Rebello         and     others      Vs.       Maharashtra     State          Road


      Transport Corpn. and another - AIR 1998 SC 3191).


19.   This Court also held that in the determination of


      the   quantum          of     compensation,        the     Court    must       be


      liberal and not niggardly in as much as in a free


      country law must value life and limb on a generous


      scale    (See         Hardeo      Kaur    and    others     Vs.    Rajasthan


      State Transport Corporation and another - (1992) 2

      SCC 567).

20.   The High Court and the Tribunal must realize that


      there      is    a     distinction        between     compensation            and


      damage. The expression compensation may include a


      claim      for         damage       but       compensation         is        more


      comprehensive.           Normally        damages    are     given       for    an


      injury      which        is      suffered,       whereas     compensation


      stands on a slightly higher footing. It is given for


      the atonement of injury caused and the intention


      behind grant of compensation is to put back the


      injured         party       as   far     as     possible    in     the       same


      position, as if the injury has not taken place, by


      way   of    grant       of       pecuniary      relief.     Thus,       in    the


      matter of computation of compensation, the approach


      will be slightly more broad based than what is done


      in the matter of assessment of damages. At the same


      time it is true that there cannot be any rigid or


      mathematical        precision          in      the        matter    of


      determination of compensation.


21.   Going by these principles, as we must, this Court is


      constrained    to    observe       that       in    this    case   the


      approach of the High Court in totally refusing to


      grant any compensation for loss of future earning is


      not a correct one.


22.   This Court could have remanded the matter to the


      High Court for assessment of compensation on the


      aforesaid lines but the accident took place in March


      2003   and     a    remand        to    the        High    Court   for


      determination of compensation will further delay the


      matter. Therefore, to shorten litigation, and having


      regard to this Court's power under Article 142 of


      the Constitution to do complete justice between the


      parties, this Court itself assesses the compensation

      as follows:

      Therefore, in the present case, the loss of future


      income   may     be    calculated   using   the   multiplier


      method as follows:


          Income of the appellant (as accepted by the

          High Curt) is Rs.3,000/- p.m. Therefore, the

          yearly income is Rs.36,000/-.


          Multiplier according to age (30 years) as per

          Schedule is 17.


          Thus,the total comes to:

          Rs.36,000/- x 17 = Rs.6,12,000/-.


          Percentage of disablement is 20%


          Therefore, loss of future earnings would come

          to Rs.1,22,400/-.


23.   If this is added to the compensation provided by the


      High     Court        in   other    categories,    the   total


      compensation comes to Rs.1,22,400/- + Rs.72,000/-,


      that is Rs.1,94,400/-.


24.   This Court, therefore, grants a lump sum of Rupees


      Two Lakhs by way of compensation plus 8% interest as


      granted by the High Court.


25.   The appeal is allowed to the extent indicated above.


      There will be no order as to costs.



                  (G.S. SINGHVI)



                  (ASOK KUMAR GANGULY)

New Delhi
August 31, 2010


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