A compensation of Rs 3.27 crore has been awarded by an accidents claims tribunal jointly to the kin of the deceased as well as those injured in the 2014 Malshej Ghat bus mishap, which claimed 35 lives.
Thane District Court judge and District Motor Accident Claims Tribunal (MACT) member K D Vadane in his recent order directed Sunil Meghrajmal Raheja from Ulhasnagar, the owner of the truck which collided with state-run bus, and Iffco Tokio General Insurance Co Ltd to make the payment to the claimants along with 8 per cent interest.
Consequent upon this order, as many as 53 claimants including surviving widows, widowers, parents and children have been awarded the compensation which includes in most cases a sum of Rs 1 lakh each on account of loss of estate and loss of love and affection besides Rs 25,000 towards funeral expenses and last rites of the deceased.
The Malshej Ghat ST bus accident killed 35 people including the bus driver and left seven injured after the vehicle plunged into a 150-feet deep gorge.
Appearing for the claimants, advocate GA Vinod told the Tribunal, that on January 2, 2014 the victims were travelling by ST bus from Thane when it met with an accident at Malshej Ghat on Kalyan–Nagar Highway after a high-speeding truck came from opposite direction and collided with it.
The accident happened due to the rash and negligent driving on the part of the truck driver, he submitted.
Of the total award of Rs 3,27,46,167, the seven injured got an amount of Rs 30.90 lakhs collectively and the rest has been awarded to the kin of the deceased.
The dead included as many as seven members of a family, the claims revealed.
The maximum amount of claim awarded was Rs 31,61, 830 to a 47-year-old BPT employee who also lost his young daughter in the same accident.
The family of the ST bus driver was given a compensation of Rs 16.07 lakhs.
In his order, the judge noted that since there was contributory negligence to the extent of 30 per cent on his part, hence his family will get a reduced amount to that extent of the total eligible amount of Rs 22.95 lakhs.
The family of another 43-year-old BEST driver who was also on board and died in the accident has been awarded a compensation of Rs 25.53 lakhs.