146. Questions lawful in cross-examination –
When a witness is cross-examined, he may, in addition to the questions hereinbefore referred to, be asked any questions which tend
(1) to test his veracity,
(2) to discover who he is and what is his position in life, or
(3) to shake his credit, by injuring his character, although the answer to such questions might tend directly or indirectly to criminate him or might expose or tend directly or indirectly to expose him to a penalty or forfeiture:
1[Provided that in a prosecution for rape or attempt to commit rape, it shall not be permissible to put questions in the cross-examination of the prosecutrix as to her general immoral character.]
Role of cross-examination
Weapon of cross-examination is a powerful weapon by which the defence can separate truth from falsehood piercing through the evidence given by the witness, who has been examined in examination-in-chief. By the process of cross-examination the defence can test the evidence of a witness on anvil of truth; Nandram v. State of Madhya Pradesh, (1995) FAJ 1 (MP).
1. Ins. by Act 4 of 2003, sec. 2 (w.r.e.f. 31-12-2002).