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Report No. 74

2. Relevant statutory provisions in the Evidence Act and Commissions of Inquiry Act.-

Section 33 of the Indian Evidence Act and sections 6, 8B and 8C of the Commissions of Inquiry Act which have relevance read as under:

"Section 33 (of the Indian Evidence Act).- Evidence given by a witness in a judicial proceeding, or before any person authorised by law to take it, is relevant for the purpose of proving, in a subsequent judicial proceeding or in a later stags of the same judicial proceeding, the truth of the facts which it states, when the witness is dead or cannot be found, or is incapable of giving evidence, or is kept out of the way by the adverse party, or if his presence cannot be obtained without an amount of delay or expense which, under the circumstances of the case, the Court considers unreasonable:


that the proceeding was between the same parties or their representatives in interest;

that the adverse party in the first proceeding had the right and opportunity to cross-examine;

that the questions in issue were substantially the same in the first as in the second proceeding.

Explanation.-A criminal trial or inquiry shall be deemed to be a proceeding between the prosecutor and the accused within the meaning of this section."

"Section 6 (of the Commissions of Inquiry Act).- No statement made by a person in the course of giving evidence before the Commission shall subject him to, or be used against him in any civil or criminal proceeding except a prosecution for giving false evidence by such statement:

Provided that the statement-'

(a) is made in reply to a question which he is required by the Commission to answer, or

(b) is relevant to the subject-matter of the inquiry".

"Section 8B (of the Commissions of Inquiry Act).- If, at any stage of the inquiry, the Commission,-

(a) considers it necessary to inquire into the conduct of any person; or

(b) is of opinion that the reputation of any person is likely to be prejudicially affected by the inquiry, the Commission shall give to that person a reasonable opportunity of being heard in the inquiry and to produce evidence in his defence:

Provided that nothing in this section shall apply where the credit of a witness is being impeached."

"Section 8C (of the Commissions of Inquiry Act).-The appropriate Government, every person referred to in section 8B and, with the permission of the Commission, any other person whose evidence is recorded by the Commission-

(a) may cross-examine a witness other than a witness produced by it or him;

(b) may address the Commission; and

(c) may be represented before the Commission by a legal practitioner or, with the permission of the Commission, by any other person."

Proposal to amend the Indian Evidence Act, 1872 so as to render admissible certain statements made by witnesses before Commissions of Inquiry and other Statutory Authorities Back

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