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Without filing of the list of witnesses, parties ought not to be permitted to commence the recording

GANGA RAM  VS. SHEKHAR KUMAR, CM (M) 1656/2019 – November 22, 2019

The Hon’ble Justice Prathiba M Singh of Delhi High Court delivered the judgment that arises out of petition stating two grievances. The first grievance the Respondent– Plaintiff (hereinafter the “Plaintiff”) had not filed any list of witnesses after the cross-examination of PW-1 was concluded. And the second grievance is in relation to the de-exhibition of the documents.

The learned counsel for the respondent submits that under the provisions of Order XVI CPC, without filing the list of witnesses, such a procedure cannot be adopted.

The honorable High Court stated that;

There is no doubt that without filing of the list of witnesses, parties ought not to be permitted to commence the recording of evidence.  Filing the list of witnesses is mandatory, as held by this Court in Zile Singh   v.  Santosh @ Santra & Ors. [CM (M) 1296/2018, decided on 6th November, 2019]

Considering the second issue the court observed that;

In relation to the de-exhibition of documents, is concerned, it is the settled position in law that mere exhibition of documents would not mean that the same would be read in evidence without having examined if the same have been proved in accordance with law.

The court also stated that in case if the Defendant has any objections in respect of mode of proof, admissibility or other objections in respect of these documents, prior to commencement of cross-examination, the said objections would be raised and recorded by the Trial Court.  After recording the objections of the Defendant, the cross-examination shall commence.  The objections shall be dealt with and adjudicated at the time of final hearing.  It is made clear that mere exhibition of these documents, shall not mean that the Trial Court has deemed them to have been proved in accordance with law or that the same have to be read in evidence.

Thus, the Hon’ble High Court held that filing of list of witnesses is mandatory and parties who fail to do so ought not to be permitted to commence the recording of evidence. And regarding the second issue, the court held that it is the settled position in law that mere exhibition of documents would not mean that the same would be read in evidence without having examined if the same have been proved in accordance with law. With these observations, the petition and all pending applications are disposed of.

View/Download Judgment: Ganga ram v. Shekhar kumar

Srutha R Elayidom

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