Crl.O.P.Nos.2302 and 4174 of 2021 and Crl.M.P.No.13952 of 2021 N.ANAND VENKATESH. J., When the matter was taken up for hearing today, the learned Government Advocate (Criminal Side) filed the status report of the Assistant Inspector General of Police, Law and Order, Chennai and sought for some more time to complete the enquiry and to file a report pursuant to the orders passed by this Court on 10.12.2021.
Crl.O.P.Nos.2302 and 4174 of 2021 and
Crl.M.P.No.13952 of 2021
N.ANAND VENKATESH. J.,
When the matter was taken up for hearing today, the learned
Government Advocate (Criminal Side) filed the status report of the Assistant Inspector General of Police, Law and Order, Chennai and sought for some more time to complete the enquiry and to file a report pursuant to the orders passed by this Court on 10.12.2021.
- It is seen from records that insofar as Crl.O.P.No.2302 of 2021 is concerned, there are totally 84 claims which has been furnished by way of filing a separate application in Crl.M.P.No.13952 of 2021. All these claims were pending before the ADJ, Hosur or before the PSJ, Hosur. Surprisingly, all these claims were dismissed as not pressed during the year 2019. This is not merely coincidental and it is more a knee-jerk reaction after complaints were made to the effect that claims have been filed with false and fabricated medical and hospital records of Cavery Hospital, Hosur. It is not clear as to whether the concerned Judges before dismissing the 84 claims as not pressed, even conducted any preliminary enquiry to ascertain as to why so many claims are not pressed. It is also not known as to whether these claims have been not pressed with the knowledge of the concerned claimants. The 84 cases have been dismissed as not pressed only based on the endorsement made by the learned counsel who were appearing on behalf of the claimants.
- The petition filed in Crl.M.P.No.13952 of 2021 along with all the relevant documents was also served on the learned Government Advocate and the learned Government Advocate was directed to instruct the Police to conduct the enquiry and to report. The status report filed today seeks for some more time to complete the enquiry and to file a report.
- This Court has no difficulty in granting some more time to the respondent-police to complete the enquiry and file a report. However, in the meantime, a process must be undertaken to ensure that the claims were not pressed only based on instructions from the claimants. It must also be ensured that by withdrawing the claims, the parties/advocates do not escape the consequences of filing false and fabricated medical/hospital records that is said to have been obtained from Cavery Hospital, Hosur. In view of the seriousness of the allegations made in the present case to the effect that a total of Rs.11.70 Crores was claimed in 84 cases filed based on fabricated/false medical/hospital records and a complaint was also made by the Cavery Hospital, Hosur in CSR No.71 of 2019 before the Hosur Police Station which is said to have been closed as Action dropped, and in view of the fact that the claims came to the withdrawn as not pressed subsequently, this Court wants to probe into this issue thoroughly and safeguard the interest of the genuine claimants and take action against the erring parties, officers and advocates who may be involved in this scam. For this purpose, this Court also wants to Suo Motto implead the Secretary, Tamil Nadu State Legal Services Authority as a party to the proceedings to help the cause of the genuine claimants. Accordingly, the following directions are issued:-
- The Secretary, Tamil Nadu State Legal Services
Authority is Suo Motto added as the 5th respondent in the Crl.O.P.No.2302 if 2021 and Mr.C.K.Chandrasekaran, learned standing counsel is directed to take notice on behalf of the Tamil Nadu State Legal Services Authority. The learned counsel for the petitioner shall serve all the papers on the learned standing counsel;
- There shall be a direction to the respondent-police tocontinue with the enquiry and a report shall be filed before this Court before the next date of hearing. While conducting the enquiry, the grievance that is expressed by the New India Assurance Company Limited in Crl.O.P.No.4174 of 2021 shall also be taken into consideration and a separate report shall be filed with regard to those complaints made by the said insurance company;
- The Secretary, Tamil Nadu State Legal Services
Authority is directed to co-ordinate with the District Legal Services Authority and the claimants who have made the claims in the 84 MCOPs shall be summoned and enquiry shall be conducted to find out if the claims were not pressed after getting their concurrence. While conducting the enquiry, the Legal Services Authority shall also identify genuine claims and report it to the concerned insurance companies. For this purpose, the Legal Services Authority shall co-ordinate with the learned counsel for the petitioner;
- The Legal Services Authority will be incurring some expenses for summoning the various claimants and hence, this
Court deems it appropriate to direct Cholamandalam MS
General Insurance Company Limited to deposit a sum of Rs.2,00,000/- (Rupees Two Lakhs Only) in this regard before the Tamil Nadu State Legal Services Authority within a period of two weeks from today. This amount shall be shared by all the insurance companies handling Motor Insurance Policies;
- Wherever the State Legal Services Authority identifies genuine claims and reports the same before the concerned insurance companies, steps shall be taken to make an attempt and settle the claims. The learned counsel for the petitioner shall co-ordinate in this regard with all the concerned insurance companies. This will save a lot of time and the genuine claimants will also get Just compensation;
- The 84 cases which are annexed along with the order is directed to be restored on file by the respective Additional District Judges and Principal District Judge at Hosur. This direction is issued in exercise of the powers of this Court under Article 226 and 227 of the Constitution of India in order to safeguard the larger interests of the claimants. In all the 84 cases, the State Legal Services Authority in co-ordination with the District Legal Services Authority shall appoint Panel Advocates to represent the claimants. This will ensure that in all those cases where the parties are able to arrive at a settlement and just compensation is fixed, an award can be passed by recording the compromise. In all those cases where there is a contest, the claimants will be ably assisted by the Panel Advocates to safeguard their rights and interests. If ultimately, it is found that fabricated/false records were filed before the Court, it will enable the Court to initiate action in the concerned MCOP cases;
- The Secretary, Tamil Nadu State Legal Services Authority is also directed to file a report before this Court during the next date of hearing; and
(f) In the additional affidavit filed in Crl.O.P.No.2302 of
2021, it is stated at paragraph Nos.5 to 7 as follows:
‘4. In fact, there is a concerted conspiracy from the moment an accident takes place. While, it is a matter of common knowledge that there are teams comprising brokers who handle such claims and there are specialized practitioners, pursuing claims for compensation, the modus operandi appears to be skilled and well entrenched to cause serious prejudice to all important stake holders.
- There are several instances of even 108 Ambulances being driven to a private hospital, very nearly hijacked, one can say, after recording Accident Register copy in a government hospital, for the record. This has a critical and detrimental impact on trauma care, during the “Golden Hour” in the treatment to victims.
- There are several instances of delay and as such the State of Tamil Nadu has come up with TAEI (Tamil Nadu Accident and Emergency Care Initiative) with trauma care centers on the high ways. They cater to the affected with excellent infrastructure support in saving lives by providing immediate and specialized trauma care.’
The special investigation team is directed to enquire the concerned officials of TAEI and their statement shall also be recorded and follow up action shall be taken and the same shall also form a part of the report to be filed by the respondentpolice.
- Post this case under the caption “For Filing Report and For Passing
Further Orders” on 04.04.2022.
Crl.O.P.Nos.2302 and 4174 of 2021 and Crl.M.P.No.13952 of 2021
1.Principal Sessions Judge, Hosur.
2.The Tamil Nadu State Legal Services Authority.