Whether court witness can be cross examined by any party to proceeding?

Rama Paswan & Ors vs State Of Jharkhand

Supreme Court

13/04/2007

Appeal (Crl.) 544 of 2007

About/from the judgment:

Whether court witness can be cross examined by any party to proceeding?

 

The object of Section 311 is to bring on record evidence not only from the point of view of the accused and the prosecution but also from the point of view of the orderly society. If a witness called by the court gives evidence against the complainant, he should be allowed an opportunity to cross-examine. The right to cross-examine a witness who is called by a court arises not under the provisions of Section 311, but under the Evidence Act which gives a party the right to cross-examine a witness who is not his own witness. Since a witness summoned by the court could not be termed a witness of any particular party, the court should give the right of cross- examination to the complainant. These aspects were highlighted in Jamatraj Kewalji Govani v. State of Maharashtra ( AIR 1968 SC 178).

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