Chief Justice inaugurates JKJA’s one-day sensitization program on ‘Provisions of  Motor Vehicles Amendment Act, Rules, 2022’

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SRINAGAR, August 12: Chief Justice, High Court of J&K & Ladakh and Patron-in-Chief J&K Judicial Academy (JKJA), Justice N. Kotiswar Singh today inaugurated one-day sensitization programme on the “Provisions of Chapter XI and XII of the Motor Vehicles Amendment Act and the Motor Vehicle Amendment Rules, 2022”.

The programme was organised by JKJA for the Presiding Officers of the MACT, officers of insurance companies and Police department.

Chairperson, Governing Committee, JKJA , Justice Sanjeev Kumar; Member, Governing Committee JKJA, Justice Rahul Bharti; Deputy Director, Prosecution, Nadia Nisar and Divisional Manager, United India Insurance Company were also present on the occasion.

Justice Rahul Bharti, Judge High Court of J&K and Ladakh and Justice Rashid Ali Dar, former Judge High Court of J&K and Ladakh were the resource persons.

Delivering the inaugural address, Justice N. Kotiswar Singh stated that under the Motor Vehicles Amendment Act and MV Amendment Rules much more responsibility has been cast upon the police as well as insurance companies. He remarked that in a collaborative effort/exercise, these stakeholders have to ensure that a person who suffers loss in terms of injury to person, property or life gets the benefit under the Act. He emphasised the necessity of insurance, duties specified to the police officer, registering authority, insurance companies and claim tribunals to determine just and fair compensation in time-bound manner.

The Chief Justice highlighted that whenever such an accident happens, Insurance Companies have a big responsibility, not only the moral responsibility, not only contractual obligation but also legal statutory obligation under the Act. “There is a bigger responsibility on the police also because reliability of the case depends upon First Accident Report submitted by an Investigating Officer”, he said.

He also stated that the Supreme Court in its judgement titled Gohar Mohammad v/s State of Uttar Pradesh laid down certain guidelines and directed all the States/UTs through Chief Secretaries and Director Generals of Police to have a unit of specialized team of police officers in each and every police station or at town-level to deal with such cases and post a trained officer to ensure the compliance of the provisions of the Act. He added that similar directions were issued by General Insurance Council that Insurance Companies to issue the proper directions to follow mandate under section 149 of the Amended Act and also appoint designated Nodal officers.

In his special remarks Justice Sanjeev Kumar, traced the history as to how the Motor Vehicles Amendment Act and MV Amendment Rules have been brought into force to set up a new regime to deal with the motor accident claim cases. He highlighted that the programme is subject specific in view of the judgement of Supreme Court in Civil Appeal No. 9322 of 2022, titled Gohar Mohammad v/s State of Uttar Pradesh.

He stated that under the amended Act and Rules, the provisions for grant of interim compensation under no fault liability have been deleted and the special procedure has been provided. He further stated that in order to sensitize the stakeholders in the administration of justice with regard to MACT claims, JKJA has organized this one-day sensitization programme.

 Director, JKJA, Yash Paul Bourney, in his welcome address underscored the importance of organising this program. He said that based on the guidelines issued by the Supreme Court and Delhi High Court, and on subsequent recommendations made by group of Transport Ministers of States along with other stakeholders, the Union Government with an objective to improve road safety, facilitate citizens in their dealings with transport departments, strengthen rural transport, public transport, last mile connectivity through automation, computerization and online services enacted the Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Act, 2019, which came into force with effect from 01.04.2022 amd through this amendment, Chapter XI dealing with insurance of motor vehicles against third party risks and Chapter XII dealing with Claims Tribunal were amended.

The day-long sensitization programme was divided into two technical sessions and an interactive session for feedback.

The first technical session was chaired by Justice Rahul Bharti, who analysed the provisions of Chapter XI and XII of the Motor Vehicles Amendment Act and the MV Amendment Rules, 2022 and stated that these chapters empower the Judiciary. He stressed upon that Humanity is involved in delivering compensation under the Act, and at the end of the day it is individual commitment which matters, come what may. He remarked that a bad law in hands of a good judge is better than a good law in the hands of a bad judge.

The second technical session was chaired by Justice Rashid Ali Dar, Former Judge High Court of J&K and Ladakh, who explained the duties of the police officers to prepare file of FIR within 48 hours and detailed accident report within 90 days. He made the participants aware about the latest pronouncements of Supreme Court and High Court of J&K and Ladakh on the subject.

He underscored the role of Insurance Companies in assessment and computation of just and fair compensation including criteria and principles.

The sensitization programme concluded with an interactive session during which the participants deliberated and discussed various aspects of the subject topic and raised queries which were answered satisfactorily by the resource persons.

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