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Report No. 185

Section 138

There is considerable discussion in the 69th Report in section 138 but only a minor amendment was suggested in para 77.23 that in the last paragraph as follows:

"The last paragraph should use the singular 'witness' in view of the singular 'him' which occurs in the section. We recommend that section 138 should be so amended."

We are not clear what the Commission meant by this recommendation. We find that para three has not used the word 'witness'. Probably the reference is to the first para which uses the word 'witnesses'.

We recommend the use of "A witness" in the place of "witnesses" in para one.

We also recommend that the three paras be numbered (1), (2), (3) and that a fourth para be added as done in Sri Lanka. We recommend that section 138 should be substituted as follows:-

"138. Order of examinations.- (1) A witness shall be first examined-in-chief, then (if the adverse party so desires) cross examined, then (if the party so desires) re-examined.

(2) The examination and cross examination must relate to relevant facts but the cross examination need not be confined to the facts to which the witness testified on his examination in chief.

(3) Direction of re-examination.- The re-examination shall be directed to the explanation of matters referred to in cross examination; and if new matter is, by permission of the Court, introduced in re-examination, the adverse party may further cross-examine upon that matter.

(4) Further examination-in-chief.- The Court may in all cases permit a witness to be recalled either for further examination-in-chief or for further crossexamination, and if the court does so, the parties have the right of further crossexamination and re-examination or re-examination, as the case may be."

Review of the Indian Evidence Act, 1872 Back

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