Who is hostile witness ? when a party cross-examines his witness? 

                  A hostile witness is one who from the manner in which he gives evidence shows that he is not desirous of telling the truth to the court. A witness who is gained over by the opposite party is a hostile witness. A witness is not to be considered hostile simply because he gives unfavorable answers. If a witness answers to certain is in direct conflict with the evidence of other prosecution witnesses; the Court should not on that ground allow the witness to be treated as hostile. He is hostile when his temper, attitude demeanor, etc. 

          In the witness Box show a distinctly hostile feeling towards the party calling him or when concealing his true sentiments he does not exhibit any hostile feeling but makes statements  contrary to what he was called to prove and By his  manner of giving evidence and conduct shows that he is not desirous of giving fairly  and telling the truth to the court.

Cross-examination of his witness -

                 The circumstances in which witness may be cross-examined by sender party calling him are laid down in section 154. Indian Evidence Act, which leaves the matter entirely to the discretion of the court.

Section.154 says
     "the court may in its discretion, permit the person who calls a witness to put questions to him, which might be put in cross-examination by the adverse party." 

        A party us allowed to cross examine his own witness because the witness displays hostility and not necessarily because; he display untruthfulness. The fact that the witness is being cross examined does not imply an admission that all the witness '  statement are false . On the other hand, the main purpose of cross-examination is to obtain admission. The prosecution cannot put questions to its witness, which could only be allowed  cross examination without first declaring the witness hostile and getting the courts permission to cross examination him. The Court has unfettered discretion to allow the prosecution to cross examine prosecution witness after  declaring them hostile. The defiance may put leading questions in cross examination to a hostile witness to elicit fact in support of the defense theory. Where a witness makes statements against the interest of the party who has called him, is  known as hostile witness.  this makes it necessary that he  should be cross examined by the very party who has called him so as to demolish his stand.  this can be done with the permission of the court. under Section.154 it is provided that the  Court may discretion permit the party who has called a witness to put him such questions as could have been asked in cross examination.

         The court held in Sat Paul vs Delhi administration AIR 1976 that the hostile witness is described as one who is not desirous of telling the truth at the  instance of the party calling him an unfavorable witness is one called by the party to prove a particular fact , who fails to prove such fact or proves an opposite fact.
In this case officer was charged with taking bribe. A trap was laid by a  Inspector of anti corruption department. the office of the accused was raided immediately. the evidence of the witness who participated in the trap (as also of Inspector ,was rejected because there were interested in a success of their trap. The other 2(two) independent witnesses also made  contradictory statement and the prosecution itself had cross examined them with d permission of the court.

The courts laid down in a number of cases that even when a witness is cross examined by the party who called him, his  evidence cannot be treated as washed off   from the record all together the Court can still  rely upon that the part of witness who inspires confidence of credit.


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