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Report No. 69

Chapter 43

Variation of Documentary Evidence by other Evidence

Section 92

I. Introductory

43.1. We now proceed to consider another important section relevant to the question of conflict between oral and documentary evidenc.- section 92. Under the main paragraph of the section, when the terms of "any such con-tract grant or other disposition of property", or any matter required by law to be reduced to the form of a document, have been proved according to the last section, no evidence of any oral agreement or statement shall be admitted. "as between the parties to any such instrument or their representatives in interest", for the purpose of contradicting, varying, adding to, or subtracting from, its terms. Six provisos qualify this section. We shall deal with them later.

43.2. There are 10 illustrations appended to the section. Of these, the first three illustrations illustrate what, by virtue of the section, cannot be proved. The remaining relate to facts which can be proved by virtue of the provisions to the section. Thus, where the document employs general words covering a class of objects, it would exclude oral evidence to the effect that a particular object in that category was excepted. That is what illustration (a) illustrates, by stating that where a policy of insurance is effected on goods in ships from one place to another, the fact that the particular ship was orally excepted from the policy cannot be proved. This is an example of oral evidence sought to be tender-ed to vary the terms of a contract reduced to the form of a document.bSimilarly, illustration (b) shows that the date of payment fixed under a written agreement cannot be changed by an oral agreement. This also would be oral agreement varying the terms of a written contract.

Illustration (c) indicates very strikingly how a map attached to a deed cannot be departed from in the determination of the question as to what passed under the deed.

Illustrations (d) and (e) illustrate the first proviso. Illustrations (f), (g) and (h) illustrate the second proviso.

Illustration (i) is a case outside the main paragraph of the section, because oral evidence is now sought to be tendered not about the terms of the contract, but about a fact, namely, the receipt of money.

Illustration (j) is in the same category.

Indian Evidence Act, 1872 Back

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