A Motor Accident Claims Tribunal (MACT) in Mumbai has dismissed a claim from Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) claiming damages to its ST bus from a tanker owner in an accident that took place between the bus and the tanker in 2008.

The undertaking had approached the tribunal in 2015, seven years after the accident. Tribunal member KR Joglekar said in his judgment that the claim had been filed after a delay of almost seven years. “To that effect no explanation is on record from the applicant or advocate or its advocate, and therefore it creates doubt,” the tribunal said.

“It is important to note that though the matter is pending since 2015, the applicant is lethargic and negligent in remaining present in the matter to take proper steps,” it said.

The tribunal also called out the MSRTC for not taking steps for examining the driver of the ST bus at the time of the accident. Further, it said that the undertaking has not clarified if it has already been compensated for the damages by the insurance company.

To prove its claim of Rs. 1.78 lakhs, the MSRTC had filed an evidence affidavit from its traffic inspector. The tribunal said, “It is important to note that after filing the claim affidavit the said witness never came to the court.”

It said further that except his bare words there was nothing on record to prove the contentions, and that the certified copies of police papers such as the FIR, driver’s statement and the original cost sheets of repairs of the bus were not produced before it. It noted that in his affidavit, the traffic inspector has mentioned the timing of the accident as 2 AM, whereas the photocopies of police papers show it took place at 3.45 PM. Member Joglekar said it is clear the witness has filed the affidavit without knowing any of the facts or going through the police papers.

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