Chennai: Madras High Court has directed a public sector insurance company to grant compensation of Rs 40,000 to a man who met with an accident while towing a broken down mini lorry with his tractor, observing that the action of giving aid to a vehicle in despair is not illegal.
Partly allowing an appeal by one K Sundarprasad, who sought Rs six lakh as compensation, Justice C S Karnan of the Madurai Bench, directed Oriental Insurance Company Limited to deposit the amount within four weeks from date of receipt of the copy.
Sundarprasad was towing the mini lorry on the Kovilpatti-Sivakasi Main Road on June 15, 2006, when the lorry accidentally started and crushed the tractor towing it, injuring him.
The man sought Rs six lakh compensation from the insurance company, but his claim was dismissed by Deputy Commissioner of Workmen in Dindigul, who observed that the tractor was not being used for `agricultural purposes` as mentioned in the insurance policy.
Hence, the present appeal.
After hearing arguments on both sides, Justice C S Karnan said the action of helping move a lorry in the state of despair cannot be said to be illegal.
He said "The coinage of phrase `to be used for agricultural purposes` is only a formal policy statement but it is admitted normal practice that the tractor is also used for doing other allied works, except illegal activities."
Since there was no proof to prove the man`s salary the court granted a lump sum of Rs 40000 as compensation to the appellant.