The High Court on Sunday ordered the accused to pay Tk4.62 crore in compensation to the family of eminent filmmaker Tareque Masud, who was killed in a road accident in 2011.
The court also said the money would have to be paid within three months of the full text of the judgment being released.
While it might appear as a big legal win for Masud’s family in a landmark case, anyone who has suffered any kind of loss or the family of someone who has died in road accidents can in fact take similar legal measures and demand compensation from the responsible party.
And to file a case over road accident casualties – injury or demise - with the District Judge’s Court, which is the ex officio Motor Accident Claim Tribunal, the plaintiff will have to spend Tk20 only, says Supreme Court lawyer Ramzan Ali Shikdar.
The High Court in its observation on Sunday said even though there is a Motor Vehicles Ordinance of 1983 in the country, not many people know about that. That is why people, despite suffering either minor or major losses in road accidents, are not moving the courts.
But the verdict on the compensation case filed by Tareque Masud’s family would help these people realise that they can also take legal measures under the ordinance and demand to be recompensed, said the court.
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According to the ordinance, the family of a person who has died in a road accident and anyone who has suffered physical or property loss in such incident are eligible to file this type of lawsuit against the alleged responsible party.
Sharing the process to lodge a case at Tk20, lawyer Ramzan Ali Shikdar also made some recommendations –
Firstly, the plaintiff will have to come to the District Judge’s Court (Motor Accident Claim Tribunal) with all proof of loss from the road accident to file the lawsuit.
Secondly, they will have to fill-up a compensation claim form at the court and attach the necessary documents and evidence with it.
Thirdly, then the form will have to be submitted to the same court after paying the Tk20 court fee. The judge will accept it afterwards.
Fourthly, once the judge accepts it, he or she will issue summons to the accused. During the hearing, both parties will appear in court and the legal battle will begin.
Fifthly, at this stage, the court will follow the Code of Civil Procedure in determining the nature of the case, framing the issues, and then either begin the trial or issue necessary ruling.
This article was first published on Bangla Tribune