Victim of a work accident in 2018, Jean Alain Mootoosamy, 57, lost his right hand. He has since struggled to find a job. He claimed damages of more than Rs 7 million from his former employer before the Supreme Court.
A victory ? Not quite. But at least, this money will allow him to finance the studies of his two children, since he does not work. Jean Alain Mootoosamy, 57, obtained Rs 1.9 million following an agreement with his ex-employer on May 5. He had dragged him to the Supreme Court, claiming damages of Rs 7,484,520 after a work accident cost him his right hand.
“This money is not enough for what I have been through,” says Jean Alain Mootoosamy. The day his life changed, he remembers it like it was yesterday. And yet, confides this father of a 13-year-old girl and a 9-year-old boy, “I try as best I can to forget… in vain. My life will never be the same again. This accident left scars forever in my life.
It is June 15, 2018. Jean Alain Mootoosamy is at his workplace in Terre-Rouge. He works as a “machine operator” for a company engaged in the manufacture of PVC pipes. That day, his job was to clean a blender. “While I was cleaning the machine, I slipped on the floor which was wet. Losing my balance, my right hand ended up under the machine,” he says.
Seriously injured, he was rushed to Dr AG Jeetoo hospital in Port-Louis. An X-ray reveals that several bones in his right hand have been fractured. The 50-year-old underwent surgery during which four of his fingers were amputated. All he has left is his thumb.
After spending four months in hospital, Jean Alain Mootoosamy is allowed to return to his home. But his life is no longer the same. Suffering from excruciating pain, he ended up undergoing a second surgery in June 2019. His right hand was then amputated. Besides physiotherapy, he is still undergoing treatment at the hospital.
“I had to be taken care of, helped to get dressed. Because of his disability, he can no longer play sports. Or ride a bicycle or motorbike. As a misfortune never comes alone, his wife Marie, who is the only one to provide for the needs of the family since her accident, lost her job in November 2019, the company for which she worked having closed its doors. Jean Alain Mootoosamy then tries to find a job within his former company. Due to his state of health, he will return empty-handed.
He wants to work again
Since January 2020, Jean Alain Mootoosamy has had a prosthesis. Adaptation takes time, he says. He does everything to get there, especially since he wants to be able to work again. He says he applied for a job as a security guard last year. “I still hope to get this job. Jean Alain Mootoosamy wants to be able to support his wife. “She never got discouraged. She is a fighter and I want to follow her example. Despite the fact that the company she worked for closed down, she immediately found another job. She is in the cleaning business. »
My wife and kids have always been there for me.
The family can only rely on the disability pension of Rs 14,000 he received. “Now I don’t receive any social assistance. It was Caritas, continues the fifty-year-old, who came to their aid. “Without Caritas, it would have been difficult to get by. »
All these ordeals could have made him sink. On the contrary, his family, says Jean Alain Mootoosamy, was a rock for him. It is thanks to the unconditional love and support of his wife that he says he was able to regain a taste for life and resume his daily activities. “My wife and children have always been there for me. They supported me enormously and helped me to overcome this so painful ordeal. »
It was on May 23, 2019 that Jean Alain Mootoosamy turned to the Supreme Court to claim damages of Rs 7,484,520. His complaint was directed against his former employer and the Mauritius Union Assurance Co. Ltd (MUA), which assured the employees.
In his complaint, Jean Alain Mootoosamy had accused the company of having failed in its obligations to ensure the safety of its employees by providing them with adequate equipment to prevent such an incident from occurring. He had retained the services of My Vikash Rampoortab and Bebakur Rampoortab (avowed).
On May 5, 2022, at the appeal of the trial before Judge Shameen Hamuth Laulloo, Me Emilie Doger de Speville, who replaced Me Patrice Doger de Speville, Senior Counsel, announced that an agreement could be reached between the parties. Me Vikash Rampoortab having confirmed his statements, the judge ratified the agreement.