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The Bharatiya Sakshya Adhiniyam, 2023

NO. 47 OF 2023

[25th December, 2023.]
An Act to consolidate and to provide for general rules and principles of evidence for fair trial.

BE it enacted by Parliament in the Seventy-fourth Year of the Republic of India as follows:-

Section 1 Short title, application and commencement

Section 2 Definitions



Section 3 Evidence may be given of facts in issue and relevant facts


Closely connected facts

Section 4 Relevancy of facts forming part of same transaction

Section 5 Facts which are occasion, cause or effect of facts in issue or relevant facts

Section 6 Motive, preparation and previous or subsequent conduct

Section 7 Facts necessary to explain or introduce fact in issue or relevant facts

Section 8 Things said or done by conspirator in reference to common design

Section 9 When facts not otherwise relevant become relevant

Section 10 Facts tending to enable Court to determine amount are relevant in suits for damages

Section 11 Facts relevant when right or custom is in question

Section 12 Facts showing existence of state of mind, or of body or bodily feeling

Section 13 Facts bearing on question whether act was accidental or intentional

Section 14 Existence of course of business when relevant



Section 15 Admission defined

Section 16 Admission by party to proceeding or his agent

Section 17 Admissions by persons whose position must be proved as against party to suit

Section 18 Admissions by persons expressly referred to by party to suit

Section 19 Proof of admissions against persons making them, and by or on their behalf

Section 20 When oral admissions as to contents of documents are relevant

Section 21 Admissions in civil cases when relevant

Section 22 Confession caused by inducement, threat, coercion or promise, when irrelevant in criminal proceeding

Section 23 Confession to police officer

Section 24 Consideration of proved confession affecting person making it and others jointly under trial for same offence

Section 25 Admissions not conclusive proof, but may estop


Statements by persons who cannot be called as witnesses

Section 26 Cases in which statement of relevant fact by person who is dead or cannot be found, etc., is relevant

Section 27 Relevancy of certain evidence for proving, in subsequent proceeding, truth of facts therein stated


Statements made under special circumstances

Section 28 Entries in books of account when relevant

Section 29 Relevancy of entry in public record or an electronic record made in performance of duty

Section 30 Relevancy of statements in maps, charts and plans

Section 31 Relevancy of statement as to fact of public nature contained in certain Acts or notifications

Section 32 Relevancy of statements as to any law contained in law books including electronic or digital form


How much of a statement is to be proved

Section 33 What evidence to be given when statement forms part of a conversation, document, electronic record, book or series of letters or papers


Judgments of Courts when relevant

Section 34 Previous judgments relevant to bar a second suit or trial

Section 35 Relevancy of certain judgments in probate, etc. jurisdiction

Section 36 Relevancy and effect of judgments, orders or decrees, other than those mentioned in section 35

Section 37 Judgments, etc., other than those mentioned in sections 34, 35 and 36 when relevant

Section 38 Fraud or collusion in obtaining judgment, or incompetency of Court, may be proved


Opinions of third persons when relevant

Section 39 Opinions of experts

Section 40 Facts bearing upon opinions of experts

Section 41 Opinion as to handwriting and signature, when relevant

Section 42 Opinion as to existence of general custom or right, when relevant

Section 43 Opinion as to usages, tenets, etc., when relevant

Section 44 Opinion on relationship, when relevant

Section 45 Grounds of opinion, when relevant


Character when relevant

Section 46 In civil cases character to prove conduct imputed, irrelevant

Section 47 In criminal cases previous good character relevant

Section 48 Evidence of character or previous sexual experience not relevant in certain cases

Section 49 Previous bad character not relevant, except in reply

Section 50 Character as affecting damages



Section 51 Fact judicially noticeable need not be proved

Section 52 Facts of which Court shall take judicial notice

Section 53 Facts admitted need not be proved



Section 54 Proof of facts by oral evidence

Section 55 Oral evidence to be direct



Section 56 Proof of contents of documents

Section 57 Primary evidence

Section 58 Secondary evidence

Section 59 Proof of documents by primary evidence

Section 60 Cases in which secondary evidence relating to documents may be given

Section 61 Electronic or digital record

Section 62 Special provisions as to evidence relating to electronic record

Section 63 Admissibility of electronic records

Section 64 Rules as to notice to produce

Section 65 Proof of signature and handwriting of person alleged to have signed or written document produced

Section 66 Proof as to electronic signature

Section 67 Proof of execution of document required by law to be attested

Section 68 Proof where no attesting witness found

Section 69 Admission of execution by party to attested document

Section 70 Proof when attesting witness denies execution

Section 71 Proof of document not required by law to be attested

Section 72 Comparison of signature, writing or seal with others admitted or proved

Section 73 Proof as to verification of digital signature


Public documents

Section 74 Public and private documents

Section 75 Certified copies of public documents

Section 76 Proof of documents by production of certified copies

Section 77 Proof of other official documents


Presumptions as to documents

Section 78 Presumption as to genuineness of certified copies

Section 79 Presumption as to documents produced as record of evidence, etc

Section 80 Presumption as to Gazettes, newspapers, and other documents

Section 81 Presumption as to Gazettes in electronic or digital record

Section 82 Presumption as to maps or plans made by authority of Government

Section 83 Presumption as to collections of laws and reports of decisions

Section 84 Presumption as to powers of attorney

Section 85 Presumption as to electronic agreements

Section 86 Presumption as to electronic records and electronic signatures

Section 87 Presumption as to Electronic Signature Certificates

Section 88 Presumption as to certified copies of foreign judicial records

Section 89 Presumption as to books, maps and charts

Section 90 Presumption as to electronic messages

Section 91 Presumption as to due execution, etc., of documents not produced

Section 92 Presumption as to documents thirty years old

Section 93 Presumption as to electronic records five years old



Section 94 Evidence of terms of contracts, grants and other dispositions of property reduced to form of document

Section 95 Exclusion of evidence of oral agreement

Section 96 Exclusion of evidence to explain or amend ambiguous document

Section 97 Exclusion of evidence against application of document to existing facts

Section 98 Evidence as to document unmeaning in reference to existing facts

Section 99 Evidence as to application of language which can apply to one only of several persons

Section 100 Evidence as to application of language to one of two sets of facts, to neither of which the whole correctly applies

Section 101 Evidence as to meaning of illegible characters, etc

Section 102 Who may give evidence of agreement varying terms of document

Section 103 Saving of provisions of Indian Succession Act relating to wills




Section 104 Burden of proof

Section 105 On whom burden of proof lies

Section 106 Burden of proof as to particular fact

Section 107 Burden of proving fact to be proved to make evidence admissible

Section 108 Burden of proving that case of accused comes within exceptions

Section 109 Burden of proving fact especially within knowledge

Section 110 Burden of proving death of person known to have been alive within thirty years

Section 111 Burden of proving that person is alive who has not been heard of for seven years

Section 112 Burden of proof as to relationship in the cases of partners, landlord and tenant, principal and agent

Section 113 Burden of proof as to ownership

Section 114 Proof of good faith in transactions where one party is in relation of active confidence

Section 115 Presumption as to certain offences

Section 116 Birth during marriage, conclusive proof of legitimacy

Section 117 Presumption as to abetment of suicide by a married woman

Section 118 Presumption as to dowry death

Section 119 Court may presume existence of certain facts

Section 120 Presumption as to absence of consent in certain prosecution for rape



Section 121 Estoppel

Section 122 Estoppel of tenant and of licensee of person in possession

Section 123 Estoppel of acceptor of bill of exchange, bailee or licensee



Section 124 Who may testify

Section 125 Witness unable to communicate verbally

Section 126 Competency of husband and wife as witnesses in certain cases

Section 127 Judges and Magistrates

Section 128 Communications during marriage

Section 129 Evidence as to affairs of State

Section 130 Official communications

Section 131 Information as to commission of offences

Section 132 Professional communications

Section 133 Privilege not waived by volunteering evidence

Section 134 Confidential communication with legal advisers

Section 135 Production of title-deeds of witness not a party

Section 136 Production of documents or electronic records which another person, having possession, could refuse to produce

Section 137 Witness not excused from answering on ground that answer will criminate

Section 138 Accomplice

Section 139 Number of witnesses



Section 140 Order of production and examination of witnesses

Section 141 Judge to decide as to admissibility of evidence

Section 142 Examination of witnesses

Section 143 Order of examinations

Section 144 Cross examination of person called to produce a document

Section 145 Witnesses to character

Section 146 Leading questions

Section 147 Evidence as to matters in writing

Section 148 Cross examination as to previous statements in writing

Section 149 Questions lawful in cross examination

Section 150 When witness to be compelled to answer

Section 151 Court to decide when question shall be asked and when witness compelled to answer

Section 152 Question not to be asked without reasonable grounds

Section 153 Procedure of Court in case of question being asked without reasonable grounds

Section 154 Indecent and scandalous questions

Section 155 Questions intended to insult or annoy

Section 156 Exclusion of evidence to contradict answers to questions testing veracity

Section 157 Question by party to his own witness

Section 158 Impeaching credit of witness

Section 159 Questions tending to corroborate evidence of relevant fact, admissible

Section 160 Former statements of witness may be proved to corroborate later testimony as to same fact

Section 161 What matters may be proved in connection with proved statement relevant under section 26 or 27

Section 162 Refreshing memory

Section 163 Testimony to facts stated in document mentioned in section 162

Section 164 Right of adverse party as to writing used to refresh memory

Section 165 Production of documents

Section 166 Giving, as evidence, of document called for and produced on notice

Section 167 Using, as evidence, of document production of which was refused on notice

Section 168 Judge's power to put questions or order production



Section 169 No new trial for improper admission or rejection of evidence



Section 170 Repeal and savings


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