2000(1) ALL MR 305


Shri Madan Yallappa Pawar Vs. The Maharashtra State Coop. Land Development Bank Ltd. & Ors.

First Appeal No. 801 of 1997

26th August, 1999

Petitioner Counsel: Mr. M.R. SURYAVANSHI
Respondent Counsel: Mr. PRASHANT NAIK

Motor Vehicles Act (1939), S.163 (3) (As deleted by Amendment Act 54 of 1994) - Claim before Tribunal - Limitation - Amendment completely deleted provision for limitation - Claim pending before Tribunal on coming into force of Amendment - Entitled to benefit of Limitation.

(1997) 1 Mh.L.J. 487 - Rel. on. (Para 3)

Cases Cited:
Dhannalal Vs. D.P. Vijayvargiya., 1997 (1) Mh.L.J. 487 [Para 3]


PANDYA J.:- At the time when the application for condonation was filed before the Motor Accidents Claims Tribunal, Kolhapur being Misc. Application No. 3 of 1992, no doubt, the view taken by the Tribunal at Kolhapur was quite justified. Section 166 Sub-Section 3 of the Moter Vehicles Act 1988, did provide for a period of limitation for 6 months which was extended by further 6 months, but not beyond it. The effect of this provision was that even if there be sufficient reasons, the Tribunal had no power to condone the delay if the appeal is filed after 12 months of the starting of the period of limitation.

2. However in the year 1994, the Parliament deleted the said sub-section 3 of section 166 of the Act of the Motor Vehicles Act. This amendment came into force from 14/11/1994.

3. Dealing with the situation that had arisen out of this amendment Act 54 of 1994 and its section 53 the Hon'ble Supreme Court in the case of Dhannalal vs. D.P. Vijayvargiya and Ors. reported in 1997 (1) Mh.L.J. 487 has clearly held that if at the time of the coming into effect of the said amendment, even if the matter is pending before the said amendment, even if the matter is pending before the Tribunal or the High Court or the Supreme Court, the benefit of the amendment will certainly be made available to the claimant. The reason is obvious. As set out in the said judgment, by deletion of sub-section 3, when the Parliament has chosen to do away with the provisions of limitation altogether, the person who had approached with a request for condonation should not be reduced to a position worse than that of the claimant who has not approached to the Tribunal at all with a request for condonation. By virtue of amendment when the requirement of limitation has been done away with completely, a person who had never approached the Tribunal can even apply for condonation. If the benefit of the amendment is not given to a claimant who had already approached but beyond the period of limitation or even within the period, but had failed to get condonation order, certainly he will be rendered to a position worse of if the aforesaid view is not taken.

4. Therefore, respectfully agreeing with the aforesaid view, we allow the appeal and direct the Tribunal to proceed with the Motor Accident Claim filed before it in accordance with law. The Tribunal shall register the claim petition, hear the parties and decide the matter on merits in accordance with law. The first appeal is disposed of accordingly.

5. Under the circumstances, the parties will bear their own costs.

Appeal Allowed.