How you should study the Indian Evidence Act for better understanding?

evidence act

The Indian Evidence Act was drafted by the STEPHENS and it came into force on the 1st of September 1872. There are 167 sections in the Act and we can say that this act has the least number of amendments till now.

Laws may be divided into substantive law and procedural laws and The Indian Evidence Act 1872 is the adjective law that is procedural law. But there are some traces of substantive law are also there for example principle of estoppel given under sections 115- 117 of the evidence act 1872.

Whenever you start preparing the procedural law I would suggest to you first go through the structure of the act. The Indian Evidence Act has been divided into three parts-

Part 1- Relevancy of facts.

Part 2- On proof.

Part 3- Production and effect of evidence.

Peculiar Features of the Indian Evidence Act 1872-

There are some provisions that only apply to the criminal law for example section 24 to 30 which deals with confessions. Provisions like estoppel given under sections 115 to 117 and sections 52 and 55 of the act are only applicable to Civil law.

Cardinal principle of the law of evidence-

What is relevant may be proved, but everything that is relevant will not be admissible as evidence. The law does not admit every fact which is logically relevant. Only those facts are admissible which are given under sections 52 to 55 of the Indian Evidence Act.

Two fundamental principles of the law of evidence-

  1. Hearsay evidence is not to be admitted.
  2. In all cases, the best evidence must be given.

To conclude, I would suggest you the best way to study the procedural law is to use the case study method. Pick up any case law and master the facts of the case and then try to put the relevant sections of the  Act into it. This is the best method to study the Indian Evidence Act 1872.

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(MARCH – APRIL 2022)



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