Under section 158 when any statement of a person, who is dead or cannot be found, is relevant under sections 32 or 33, and have been proved, then all matters may be proved either: (a) to corroborate, or (b) to contradict 0Ã (c) to confirm the credit of the person whose statement was proved. But those matters can be proved only which might have been proved if that person might have been called as a witness and had denied upon cross-examination the truth of matter suggested.
All rules relating to safeguards for veracity and impeachment as applicable to the witness physically present in the court are equally applicable to the witnesses who are dead.
“The Legislature intends by this section to submit such statement to the tests of contradiction and corroboration in the same way as if those statements were made by the witness in the box. No sanctity attached to such statements simply because the person is dead or cannot be examined as a witness. His credibility may be impeached or confirmed in the same manner as in the case of a living witness.”—RATANLAL & DHIRAJLAL.