Friday, December 27, 2013

Don’t wish to pursue case, says Aston Martin mishap complainant



RTO Frowns As Fancy Audi No. Reserved But Registration Not Done

Somit Sen TNN



    TOI enquiries in the RTO revealed that the number MH03 BJ 6666—as captured in photographs of the Audi 6 published on Thursday—had not yet been allotted to Phorum Ruparel by the Wadala RTO. The car owner had paid the “reserve price” for the special number 6666 and this amount (Rs 70,000) was deposited with the RTO on Monday. “The taxes may be paid through the dealer, but the car is not yet registered on that number,” a senior official said. 

    “We have paid all taxes and asked the RTO to register the vehicle in the new year (January 4). We are not taking the car out till then, so there should be no problem,” said Phorum. When told that fixing a number plate before registration was deemed illegal, she said she would abide by the rules once the RTO notice arrives. “As of now, we have not received any notice. If required, we will remove the number plate,” she said. 

    Ruparel has identified Reliance Ports driver Bansilal Joshi, or a person resembling Joshi, as the one at the wheel of the Aston Martin that rammed into her Audi and an Elantra on December 9. Joshi, 55, had approached the police later that day and “confessed” to driving the car. There were reports earlier of witnesses initially telling the police that they had seen a portly young man get out of the car after the accident. 

    “I don’t wish to pursue the case further because, according to police investigation, Bansilal Joshi was the accused,” she said. 

    When TOI visited Ruparel’s flat on Thursday afternoon, the new car with the number plate was found parked near the stilt area. Wadala regional transport officer B I Ajri confirmed a notice had been sent to the car owner for “unauthorized use” and the flying squad of the Wadala
RTO was being alerted. “If the car owner does not comply, we can refer the matter to the local police station, which can prosecute the person under section 420 of IPC,” another senior officer said.
 
    The number 6666 was the same one in Ruparel’s old car (MH14 DN 6666). “We sought the same VIP number for the new car as it is our preferred number and have paid a premium amount for it,” Ruparel said. An RTO official said the money was received to “reserve” the number and it had not been allotted to the person till Thursday.
 
    Joining her daughter in dismissing talk of compensation, Ruparel’s mother said they belonged to an affluent family and were able to afford an expensive car. “So it should not surprise the media and one cannot jump to wrong conclusions that we are being compensated by Reliance. The new car has been purchased from our own money. Nobody from Reliance approached us,” she said.
 
REPLACEMENT AUDI BILL ALMOST 45L Cost of replacement car & fancy registration number New Audi 6 40lakh Tax amount 4 lakh Special number 70,000
 
REGISTRATION PROCESS The registration process involves submission of documents such as invoice, proof of residence, PAN card, tax papers, insurance documents, etc. In the present case, the car is not yet registered on the number MH-03-BJ-6666
 
INSURANCE PROCESS In case of collision, typically car owners claim from their own insurer. One can claim from the second car owner’s third-party cover, but such claims usually do not take place in India because it is cumbersome, requires spot survey and a chargesheet to establish blame and is settled by motor accident claims tribunal
 
When does insurance company settle for total loss?
    
Insurance regulator has said a claim can be settled for a total loss if damages are over 75% of the insured’s declared value which is the limit of the company’s liability
    An insurance company can settle for total loss even if the damage is trivial when the vehicle is underinsured compared to market value
 
Can one get compensation and keep the damaged car? No. In case of a total loss compensation, the vehicle is always retained by the insurance company
 
Likely action for non-registration
    
Illegal to display or affix number plate before the car is registered
    Amounts to cheating, car owner can get a showcause notice
    RTO can refer the matter to police and the person can be booked under section 420 of the Indian Penal Code

 
What the Ruparels say
    
We have not received the RTO
    notice so far. If required, we will remove the number plate of the car. But we are not taking out the car from the building compound till we get the RC book from the RTO. We are law-abiding citizens and have paid all taxes for the car. We have bought this new car from our own money, and have also paid for the VIP number 6666, which has been our preferred number.
(With inputs by Mateen Hafeez)



The new A6 at the Ruparels’ house; (left) the damaged A4 
 
The Times of India, December 27, 2013

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