Question: A filed a suit against B and C on the basis of a promissory note. B in his written statement admitted the claim of A. When A appeared as a witness, B wanted permission to cross-examine A. Decide and give reasons. [D.J.S. 1989] Find the answer to the mains question only on Legal Bites. [A filed a… Read More »

Question: A filed a suit against B and C on the basis of a promissory note. B in his written statement admitted the claim of A. When A appeared as a witness, B wanted permission to cross-examine A. Decide and give reasons. [D.J.S. 1989] Find the answer to the mains question only on Legal Bites. [A filed a suit against B and C on the basis of a promissory note. B in his written statement admitted the claim of A. When A appeared as a witness, B wanted permission to cross-examine A. Decide...

Question: A filed a suit against B and C on the basis of a promissory note. B in his written statement admitted the claim of A. When A appeared as a witness, B wanted permission to cross-examine A. Decide and give reasons. [D.J.S. 1989]

Find the answer to the mains question only on Legal Bites. [A filed a suit against B and C on the basis of a promissory note. B in his written statement admitted the claim of A. When A appeared as a witness, B wanted permission to cross-examine A. Decide and give reasons.]

Answer

Section 137 of the Indian Evidence Act states that a witness should be first examined by the party who has called him and this is called examination-in-chief. And when an adverse party examines the witness, it is called cross-examination. The cross-examination may explore all the relevant facts and not necessarily, the facts that were asked to the witness during the examination in chief.

A party must be given a fair chance to cross-examine the witness. The summary procedure cannot take away the right of a party to cross-examine the other side. In State of Karnataka v. S Dhandapani Modaliar [1992 Cr LJ 24 (Karn)], it was held that some time should intervene between the framing of the charge and statement of the accused about his desire for cross-examination because in a large number of cases they are ignorant of the law and must need advice before they can make up mind whether to further cross-examine the witnesses already examined by the prosecution.

The Evidence Act gives the right of cross-examination only to the adverse party. So, a defendant can cross-examine a co-defendant only when the interest of the co-defendant is adverse to the interest of the defendant. A defendant having no conflicting interest with the plaintiff cannot be permitted to cross-examine the plaintiff. The right of cross-examination is available only to an adverse party [Vijaya v. Saraswathi 2008 (3) CCC 535 (Mad.)]

Section 246 of the Criminal Procedure Code, 1973 giving the accused a right in a warrant case to cross-examine the witnesses for the prosecution after a charge has been framed, is an exception to the general rule. In the exercise of the inherent power of the court, the magistrate in an inquiry under Chapter XIX of the Code of Criminal Procedure may allow the accused to reserve cross-examination for a future occasion in the special circumstances of a case.

It is a settled principle of law that a witness should be cross-examined on each and every point and failure to cross-examine him/her on a particular point would entail a presumption that the party, not cross-examining the witness, had accepted the evidence.

Any fact asserted by a witness, if not challenged in his cross-examination by the adverse party, will certainly amount to acceptance of that fact. If the relevant facts in the examination-in-chief are not challenged in the cross-examination, they shall be deemed to be admitted. [Mariamma Itty v. KJ Abraham, AIR 2017 CC 5]

Where the accused had an opportunity to cross-examine the witnesses but failed to avail himself of this opportunity and adopted the cross-examination done by other accused on the witnesses. He subsequently cannot be permitted to find fault in the evidence of the witnesses and rely upon some contradictions which otherwise do not show any contradiction much less major one affecting their testimony. [Bilal Hajar v. State, AIR 2018 SC 4780]

Thus, in the present case at hand, when A, the plaintiff appeared as a witness and respondent B wanted permission to cross-examine A, he shall be allowed to do so as a matter of right.


Important Mains Questions Series for Judiciary, APO & University Exams

  1. Law of Evidence Mains Questions Series Part-I
  2. Law of Evidence Mains Questions Series Part-II
  3. Law of Evidence Mains Questions Series Part-III
  4. Law of Evidence Mains Questions Series Part-IV
  5. Law of Evidence Mains Questions Series Part-V
  6. Law of Evidence Mains Questions Series Part-VI
  7. Law of Evidence Mains Questions Series Part-VII
  8. Law of Evidence Mains Questions Series Part-VIII
  9. Law of Evidence Mains Questions Series Part-IX
  10. Law of Evidence Mains Questions Series Part-X
Updated On 2021-10-30T11:33:07+05:30
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