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Old 19th August 2008, 15:34   #1
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Default Please help regarding legal enquiry

Mods : I don't know if this is indeed the right forum for posting this query. But I found this forum title closest for my query. I am very worried due to this problem and would be obliged if someone can help.

I purchased a second hand Maruti Alto from Maruti True Value store 2 years ago. The car is running absolutely fine and I use it rather sparingly as I prefer bike most of the time in Pune's maddening traffic.

Yesterday, I received a regd. letter from Hatkanagale (district Kolhapur) police station stating that the car was involved in some road accident - however, they haven't mentioned any details about the accident such as nature of the accident or date of the accident. I have never driven my car outside Pune and have never visited the town mentioned here (in fact, I am not sure if I have spelt it correctly or not). In fact, I haven't had even a minor accident with this car ever since I bought it.

I do not know if the accident took place before I bought the car (in which case, it shouldn't be the problem as I have required documents showing transfer) - however, the FIR number (XX/08) suggests that the compliant was filed this year -- in which case how can I prove that I have never visited that place? Will my car get confiscated? The letter mentions that I should visit that place with my car & its papers - I have never driven car so long and moreover I absolutely do not have time to go there and talk to those cops.

What can be done in this case? I don't have good experience with the cops and generally very skeptical about contacting them directly - how else can I tackle this matter? What should I do to get rid of such false accusations? I am really frustrated & really worried. Can you give me some directions about how to deal with this problem???? I am pretty tensed up....any help, suggestions would be highly appreciated!

TIA,
- Manish

Last edited by manish7 : 19th August 2008 at 15:41.
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Old 19th August 2008, 19:28   #2
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Manish,
I pray that this will resolve soon with minimum complications ;meanwhile I want you to take care of two important points:
1.) On the day of accident (if mentioned in the letter) , remember where you were and gather strong proofs for that. I mean keep your friends/colleagues ,who were with you on that day, be informed of this situation .Let them know that thier witness is important.
2.)It's not just about you but gather strong alibis for you car as well. If parked at some mall or office- then preserve those records. Else gather atleast a few strong witnesses.
About the rest, i wish someone with legal knowledge/experience would help.
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Old 19th August 2008, 19:47   #3
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WEIRD. Unfortunate, if I read the suggestions right - you would now need to prove that your car was with you - hence save all ridiculous parking/etyadi receipts? omigod.

My best wishes with you - that's downright unfortunate!
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Old 19th August 2008, 19:54   #4
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have a strong alibi in place for the date and time mentioned of the accident. i.e have strong witnesses to prove that you were in a different place with the car at the time of the so called accident.

You will have to visit the police station though.

Hope you get out of this soon
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Old 19th August 2008, 19:54   #5
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Yes. you need to make sure you collect details and evidence to show that your car was in your possession on the given date.
Depending on the nature of incident, is it possible to check from the car if it went some repair around that date or not?
Good luck.
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Old 19th August 2008, 19:56   #6
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Yaa its weird. I am sure you are consulting some lawyer as well. Looks like someone made a mistake while registering FIR(w.r.t. to Reg number)

Is there ANY toll gate between pune and that town?

It might help to show that car never crossed any of those toll booths.
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Old 19th August 2008, 20:02   #7
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Try to get workshop bills from a known person so as to make sure that your car was being worked upon on that day/time not being driven.

Try contacting the authorities who sent you via a lawyer and gather details as to what type of accident major/minor/involving any loss of lives etc etc.

Parking details from your office etc will also work.

Sometimes the cops send message to the nearest matching number if the information is not complete.

e.g. After road accident some witness says that the car had number HR-12-K-22XX and it was white alto.

So they will try to find all the cars with numbers starting with HR-12-K-22.. and send notices.

It is definitely a case of incomplete information and they are trying to just find someone so that they can close the case.

So get a lawyer and start working,dont sit idle and dont feel scared if you are innocent(which i'm assuming),nothing can trouble you.
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Old 19th August 2008, 20:25   #8
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Man - I am 100% innocent. I wouldn't have denied if I had even scratched someone. There is absolutely no minor or major accident after I bought the car.

About toll booths - I am not sure because I have never visited that town; but I will find out. The car stays in my house parking almost everyday - it's sparingly used on weekends. In fact running has been hardly 3000 kms. since I bought it!!!

I am trying to get in touch with one lawyer today and wil probably meet him tomorrow.
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Old 19th August 2008, 20:35   #9
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This looks like a frame-up, cannot rule out such things where cops are totally corrupt.

Since you bought the car, have you changed the registration number?
Since they got your address, chances are they wrote to the RTO and got the address of current owner, i.e. you?
You were not the owner of the car at the time of the accident - this is corraborated by the change of owner in RTO.
If you go and car wih you to the police station, you stand the high chnace of being arrested as an "absconder" and implicated in some "hit-and-run" accident. Police don't listen - they size you up and extort depending on how they perceive your net worth.
There is a strong chance that the police has to be seen to be taking action - they have traced the owner and communicated to him. Unlikely to pursue further action, definitely not some small-village/town police station. They cannot just come and meet you in Pune on their own, they have to take permission/ cooperation of local cops. And our Maharahstra cops are not going to waste their time without their hafta.

My advise would be, ignore the letter and rest easy. In case you are still uneasy about the matter, get a lawyer ot send them a letter (by CoP, for authentic record) saying you are not involved, very shor and swee, no more han 2-3 lines, and plead your inability to go over to wherever they want you to go. Don't disclose too much of details about yourself.

My last advise would be, ignore.
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Old 19th August 2008, 21:28   #10
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Report this immediately to the place from where you purchased the car. If possible try to contact the previous owner.

Consult a lawyer immediately and let the lawyer to confirm with the police station which car(make & color) it is(without informing anything about your car).
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Old 19th August 2008, 21:45   #11
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Consult a lawyer who specialize in Motor vehicle case and collect the details of the incident from the police station. Let him verify if its just a mistaken number plates issue, or if it was during previous ownership. Then you can go and report to the Police station with lawyer, with all relevant docs and proof that you were not involved in the accident. True value can help you establish the possession date.

Usually cops check the vehicle, write an FIR and file the report to the court, since most of the time such cases are initiated by the court, when it receives a hit n run/insurance claim etc.

If your car is accident free, that itself is a good proof. Also it might not be wise to say that your car was in a garage on the date, since that can point fingers at the car sent to a workshop for accidental repair.

Dont ignore and run away, consult a legal adviser, if a registered post can reach you, cops/arrest warrant can also, dont complicate things further.
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Old 19th August 2008, 21:58   #12
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Best of luck man. Dont worry things will sort out.
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Old 19th August 2008, 22:00   #13
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Talked to a lawyer here - here is a more reasoned answer:

1. It is normal for police to issue a notice after they complete their invesigations.

2. You could write a reply to them stating that you were not the owner on the date of the accident, you have nothing to do with accident, etc, and attach RC documents with details of your ownership. Plead your inability to appear personally because of business commitments.

3. Chances are they may close the case then and there, or check witth RTO who the previous owner was - they are supposed to ac against the owner at time of accident.

4. Posisbilities that they may demand you to come personally in which case you can still get a local lawyer (in that place) to represent you.

5. Worst case scenario is the police issues a arrest warrant and sends it to your local police station, whereby they have to arrest you.
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Old 19th August 2008, 22:50   #14
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Some Legal Advice
(1) Consult a good criminal lawyer who specialises in mainly accident cases. The lawyer must send a notice to the police authorities at Hatkanagale (district Kolhapur) police station with a copy endorsed to the Supdt of Police, Kolhapur. The notice must seek details of the facts of the case and also hint at seeking damages for wrongful framing of charges and for causing mental agony and lowering of your self esteem for absolutely no fault of yours whatsoever. You can have the option of filing a defamation suit (defamation is a criminal case), claiming damages of a substantial amount at the Pune District Court after you are declared innocent in this case.
(2) Request your lawyer to study the case and it is evident that your were at Pune on the date of the alleged accident. Thats a case of mistaken identity for sure. Your car has been framed in this matter and the registration number of the car involved was noted wrongly.
(3) Your office should be able to establish from its records that you were present at the office for duties on your two-wheeler. A letter to this effect under the head "to whomsoever it may concern" stating that you were in the office during those days- a period of 7 days will be OK. Is there anything in any Govt deptt records that day to prove that you were at Pune that day? Please try to remember if you have signed anything for the government(state or central) in any receipt book or any other such record.This is held by the court as one of the most authentic documents and primary evidences. As said by someone here on this thread, get a receipt for repairs of your car from your garage three days earlier to the episode and three days later too. Thats seven days of garage confinement.These are also primary evidences.
(4) In case the police files the chargesheet at the court of a competent magistrate in an appropriate court there it will be a criminal case under the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988, IPC, 1890 and the Cr PC, 1973. In such case they will serve you summons at your address and attending the court will be very necessary . You can be represented by your lawyer from Pune at the court of that place. You must have a doctor's certificate saying that you will not be ble to attend the court on the hearing date. The lawyer will also ask for travel/boarding expenses apart from his fees. If no one attends the magistrate can issue arrest warrants. Anticipatory bail can be obtained in such emergency. Such an emergency can occur even earlier (maybe some days later too) depending on the gravity of the case.
(5)You can file another criminal case in the Pune Dist Court before the Judicial Magistrate First Class(JMFC) making the Supdt of Police, Kolhapur, PI and others down below in the hierarchy as the defendants and co-defendants and alleging that they are framing up false charges against you and that they be refrained from doing so vide an interim Court order.

Last edited by anjan_c2007 : 19th August 2008 at 22:57.
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Old 19th August 2008, 22:57   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hvkumar View Post
Talked to a lawyer here - here is a more reasoned answer:

1. It is normal for police to issue a notice after they complete their invesigations.

2. You could write a reply to them stating that you were not the owner on the date of the accident, you have nothing to do with accident, etc, and attach RC documents with details of your ownership. Plead your inability to appear personally because of business commitments.

3. Chances are they may close the case then and there, or check witth RTO who the previous owner was - they are supposed to ac against the owner at time of accident.

4. Posisbilities that they may demand you to come personally in which case you can still get a local lawyer (in that place) to represent you.

5. Worst case scenario is the police issues a arrest warrant and sends it to your local police station, whereby they have to arrest you.
Thanks for your detailed & to-the point reply Kumar - I am also planning to send a letter after consulting a lawyer. Since I do not know date of accident (and nature of accident also for that matter), I cannot claim that car didn't belong to me at that time - but I will convey details of the ownership . I am planning to send a letter to tell them that the car hasn't been driven outside Pune after I purchased it and any previous complaint should be sent to previous owner. Let's see what happens - I will post here accordingly!
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