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Report No. 185

Section 84

Section 84 refers to the 'Presumption as to collections of laws and reports of decisions'. It reads as follows:

"84. The Court shall presume the genuineness of every book purporting to be printed or published under the authority of the Government of any country, and to contain any of the laws of that country, and of every book purporting to contain reports of decisions of the Courts of such country."

This section has to be read with Section 38 which makes relevant the statements of the laws and rulings contained in officially printed books of any country, i.e. including India. Section 57 allows the Court to take 'judicial notice' of the existence of all laws and statutes in India and in UK. Section 74 410 recognises the statutory records as public records while Section 78 lays down the method of proving the statutes passed by the legislature.

This section dispenses with proof of the genuineness of the officially printed books of any country (including foreign countries) containing laws and reports of decisions of courts. Their accuracy is to be preserved. As regards the books containing authorized reports of decisions of the Courts in India, see Indian Law Reports Act (18 of 1875). The relevancy of the decisions published therein is governed by Section 38 of the Evidence Act (see Sarkar, 15th Ed., 1999, page 1232). (No doubt, there is no similar statute governing the Supreme Court Reports but Section 84 would certainly apply).

In the 69th Report it was stated in para 39.18 that the words 'any country' in Section 84 includes India also. It was also stated that the section does not require any amendment. We agree.

Review of the Indian Evidence Act, 1872 Back

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