Like judges, lawyers must also ensure that truth triumphs in administration of justice
Ankur Sharma & Anr vs State of HP
Himachal Pradesh HC
Cr. MMO No. 471 of 2018
About/from the judgment:
“In the administration of justice, Judges and Lawyers play equal roles.”
The Himachal Pradesh High Court has observed that lawyers, like judges, must also ensure that truth triumphs in the administration of justice.
Justice Tarlok Singh Chauhan made this observation while disposing a criminal petition challenging the trial court order rejecting an application under Section 311 CrPC, for recalling/reexamining of one witness.
He remarked, in the penultimate paragraph of the order: “In the administration of justice, Judges and Lawyers play equal roles. Like Judges, Lawyers must also ensure that truth triumphs in the administration of justice. Truth is the foundation for justice. It is incumbent upon all the Judicial Officers to make an endeavour to ascertain truth in every matter and to leave no stone unturned in achieving this object.”
The judge observed that, in the instant case, trial court adopted a hyper-technical view in rejecting the application, ignoring the purpose for which the salutary provisions of Section 311 has been incorporated. “It has failed to adhere to the well known adage that every trial is a voyage in which quest for truth is the goal,” the court said.
Referring to case laws, the court explained the purpose of Section 311 CrPC. It said: “What can be clearly gathered from the aforesaid exposition of law is that Section 311 Cr.P.C. has been enacted to enable the Court to find the truth and render a just decision where under any Court by exercising its discretionary authority at any stage of inquiry, trial or other proceedings can summon any person as a witness or examine any person in attendance though not summoned as a witness or recall or reexamine any person already examined, who is expected to be able to throw light upon the matter in dispute. The object of the provision as a whole is to do justice not only from the point of view of the accused and the prosecution but also from the point of view of an orderly society. Yet, this power has to be exercised only for strong and valid reasons that too with care, caution and circumspection. Recall is not a matter of course and the discretion given to the Court has to be exercised judicially to prevent failure of justice.”
In this case, the accused had moved the application seeking recall/reexamination of a witness on the ground that the said witness is not a natural and eye witness and is an interested witness who has deposed at the instance of the complainant. It was further alleged that the said witness had no occasion to visit the area in the evening and the deposition of the said witness is not natural.
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