Supreme Court Orders Central Government to Decide on Increasing Compensation for ‘Hit and Run’ cases within eight weeks

This Report is covered by Krishna Parihar, a first year law student from Tamil Nadu National Law University, Tiruchirappalli.

Section 161 of  motor vehicle act came into effect from 1st April 2022. This mandate was particularly formed to issue compensation to the victims of  hit and run case from the central government in respect of death the compensation of two lakh rupees or higher as prescribed by central government will be given to the victim and fifty thousand or higher in cases of grievous hurt when the vehicle of the accident goes untraceable but only negligible number of victims has taken advantage of such schemes because of lack of awareness

The court while giving its directions observed that this lack of awareness was ought to be considered by standing committee set up under sub section (3) of section 161 however that has not been done. Additionally statistics were also noted about the high and run accidents which records that only 205 cases were filed in the year 2022-202 out of which only 95 were claims have been settled. Initiatives for public awareness about the Scheme was also made. However, it’s uncertain if the General Insurance Council submitted a report on the Scheme’s functioning by the date of August 31, 2023, and whether the Standing Committee has made any decisions based on it.

This scheme further supersedes the solatium scheme framed under sub section (1) of section 163 of MV act, this scheme provide a limit of 6 months to file a case which is no longer is existence but the new scheme provide no time limit to file a case.

Observing all of these issues the supreme court directs the standing committee to issue directions for effective implement, public awareness and grants a time of 4 months to report compliance with the directions and gave a time of 8 weeks to issue directive for the claimants of solatium scheme  to apply within the extended time as a one- time measure. The court additionally directs that police officers must inform hit and run accident victim about the compensation scheme.

Sc has issued a slew of directions

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