The medical and financial conditions of a person to be considered as sufficient grounds for the release of the amount awarded in their favor deposited in the form of FDR. This was held in the case of Smt. Mina Devi v. Shreshth Jain & Ors,[CM(M) 201/2021] by Hon’ble Justice Prathibha M Singh in the High Court of Delhi.
The brief background is that an accident had taken place in Paschim Vihar, Delhi where the Petitioner’s son had unfortunately passed away. An FIR was duly registered and a claim was also filed by the Petitioner under the Motor Vehicles Act 1988, before the Motor Accident Claims Tribunal. The matter was referred to the Lok Adalat and an award of settlement to the tune of Rs.13,40,000/- was passed in the Lok Adalat. In the award passed by the Lok Adalat, the total amount was divided amongst various Petitioners, but the period of the FDR was mentioned as five years. The amount awarded in favour of the Petitioner was Rs.7,00,000/-. The Insurance Company deposited the said amount and thereafter, the Petitioner moved various applications before the Tribunal for release of the said amount. The release of the said amount has been repeatedly denied by the Tribunal.
The Petitioner is a senior citizen who is over 70 years of age. She is in a precarious financial condition, and accordingly prays for the release of the said amount. Counsel for the Petitioner has emphasized upon the medical and financial conditions of the Petitioner. The Petitioner’s prayer for release has been rejected, in spite of the Petitioner having cited extremely adverse conditions such as flooding of her house, and other chronic medical conditions. The tribunal has continuously maintained its stand that even the above-mentioned reasons do not constitute sufficient grounds for a premature release of the amount in the FDR.
The insurance company has also deposited the said amount. Thus, considering the physical, medical, and financial condition of the Petitioner, there can be no reason whatsoever not to release the said amount in favour of the Petitioner, who is the mother of the deceased and is admittedly over 70 years of age. Counsel for the Insurance Company has also submitted that the release of the amount is purely within the discretion of this Court as the amount as per the order by the Lok Adalat, has already been deposited by the Insurance Company.
The court observed that If the amount is not released, the entire purpose may be defeated owing to her age, medical condition, and precarious financial condition. Considering the overall facts and circumstances of the case, the sum of Rs. 7 lakhs, lying in an FDR, along with proportionate interest which has been earned on the said amount was ordered to be released to the petitioner.