Jammu And Kashmir High Court: S. 311 CrPC Asserts Power Of Courts To Recall And To Summon Witnesses Even After Closure Of Evidence In Criminal Proceedings


The Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh High Court in the case Farid Ahmad Tak Vs UT of J&K & Ors observed and has reiterated that power of the court as stated under section 311 of Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 to recall any witness or witnesses already examined or to summon any witness can be invoked even if the evidence in both sides is closed, so long as the court retained seisin of the criminal proceedings.
The bench headed by Justice Vinod Chatterji Koul in the case observed while hearing a revision plea in terms of which the petitioner had assailed an order passed by Special Judge Anticorruption, wherein the court allowed the prosecution to produce a witness by issuing bailable warrants for procuring attendance.
Therefore, the petitioner in the plea contended that it has been directed by the High Court that the trial Court to hold the trial expeditiously without allowing the proceedings to be protracted by prosecution and the trial Court gave another opportunity to the prosecution to produce witnesses.
Earlier, one of the accused in the criminal cases had preferred a revision plea filed against the order of Trial Court, wherein allowing production of witnesses by prosecution. It has also been directed by the High Court the Trial Court to expedite the trial, which being the order that the petitioner relied upon.
The High Court in the case observed that as per section 311 of Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 the court at any stage of any inquiry, trial or any other proceedings, summon any person as a witness, or the court for examining any person in attendance, though not summoned as a witness, or recall and re-examine any person who is already been examined. Further, it stated that the said power is not confined to any particular class of person.
The court also referred to the apex court judgment in the case Rajaram Prasad v. State of Bihar, wherein it has been held by the Supreme Court that widest powers have been invested with the courts under Section 311 of Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 when it comes to the question of summoning a witness or to recall or to re-examine any witness who is already being examined.
Accordingly, the bench dismissed the plea.