Electronic Evidence under Indian Evidence Act, 1872
Section 65A and 65B have been added by Information Technology Act,2000. Section 65A lays down the contents of electronic records may be proved with the provisions laid in the Section 65B.Section 65B (Admissibility of electronic records) states that any information contained in electronic records which is printed on a paper, stored, recorded or copied in optical or magnetic media produced by a computer shall be also deemed to be a document if the conditions mentioned in this section are satisfied in relation to the information and computer in question and shall be admissible in any proceedings , without any further proof or production of the original.
The conditions of Section 65B are:
- Information was produced during the regular course of activities by the person having a lawful control over the computer’s use .
- Information has been regularly fed into the computer in the ordinary course of said activities .
- Throughout the material part of said period , the computer was operating properly or the improper operation as not such as to affect the electronic record or the accuracy of its contents.
- Information contained in the electronic records reproduces or is derived from such information fed into the computer in the ordinary course of activities .
The primary purpose is to sanctify proof by secondary evidence. This facility of proof by secondary evidence would apply to any computer output, such output being deemed as a document . A computer output is a deemed document for the purpose of proof.
Where the information was processed or fed into the computer on inter linked computers or one computer after the other in succession all the computers so used shall be treated as one single computer.
Section 65B also lays down that for the purpose of evidence, a certificate identifying the electronic records containing the statement and describing the manner in which it was produced by a computer and satisfying the conditions mentioned above and signed by a officer in charge of the operation or management of the related activities shall be the evidence of any matter stated in the certificate it shall be sufficient for the matter to be stated to the best of the knowledge and belief of the person stating .
Any information to be taken to be supplied to a computer , if it is done in any appropriate form whether directly with or without human intervention by means of any appropriate equipment , or any information is supplied by any official in the course of his activities with a view of storing or processing it even if the computer is being operated outside those activities .
In a matrimonial proceedings for dissolution of a marriage, the wife was alleged to have abused and threatened her husband on the cell phone and the same was recorded on it . The matter was recorded by the husband in an Audio C.D . The cell phone was not produced . Only the C.D was exhibited . The wife objected alleging fabrication . The court ordered the C.D to be marked as an exhibit subject to the condition that whenever it was played, opportunity for cross examination should be given to the wife. Where the petitioner ( election petition ) had himself admitted that he was not aware as to how and in what manner the C.D was prepared , it was held to be not admissible in evidence. It was of no help to the petitioner I proving the charge of corruption against the returned candidate .
An evidence related to electronic record. A prayer was made for producing it by means of video conferencing . The court said that there was no bar on examination of a witness through video conferencing . This is natural part of electronic method therefore the prayer was therefore , allowed with usual safeguards . It was a claim for pendente lite maintenance . The husband was permanently living in America . His statement was allowed to be recorded by the electronic device.
Family Courts Act (Section 10(3)):
For the purpose of recording evidence with utilization of video conferencing technology , discretion has been vested in the family court itself to record evidence through such process . By virtue of Section 10(3) , family courts are empowered to adopt their own procedure to arrive at a settlement or to get truth of the matter.
Due to enormous growth in e-governance throughout the Public & Private Sector, Electronic Evidence have involved into a fundamental pillar of communication, processing and documentation. These various forms of electronic evidence are increasingly being used in both Civil & Criminal Litigations. During trials, Judges are often asked to rule on the admissibility of electronic evidence and it substantially impacts the outcome of civil law suit or conviction/acquittal of the accused. The Court continue to grapple with this new electronic frontier as the unique nature of e-evidence, as well as the ease with which it can be fabricated or falsified, creates hurdle to admissibility not faced with the other evidences. The various categories of electronic evidence such as website data, social network communication, e-mail, SMS/MMS and computer generated documents poses unique problem and challenges for proper authentication and subject to a different set of views.
The admissibility of the secondary electronic evidence has to be adjudged within the parameters of Section 65B of Evidence Act and the proposition of the law settled in the recent judgment of the Apex Court and various other High Courts as discussed above. The proposition is clear and explicit that if the secondary electronic evidence is without a certificate u/s 65B of Evidence Act, it is not admissible and any opinion of the forensic expert and the deposition of the witness in the court of law cannot be looked into by the court. However, there are few gaps which are still unresolved as what would be the fate of the secondary electronic evidence seized from the accused wherein, the certificate u/s 65B of Evidence Act cannot be taken and the accused cannot be made witness against himself as it would be violative of the Article 19 of the Constitution of India.
25 thoughts on “ELECTRONIC EVIDENCE”
Thanks for this article, gives a lot of information.
Very informative article, the primary idea of electronic evidence is to sanctify proof by secondary evidence. This facility of proof by secondary evidence would apply to any computer output, such output being deemed as a document . A computer output is a deemed document for the purpose of proof. Thanks for the article!
Very knowledgeable article, and the best part about this article is that it has been explained with the examples and facts of case laws with judgement, which helps to get the complete knowledge and understanding.
very well written
The article is very useful for a person interested in cyber law. With the help of examples or real cases, the practical application of the concerned articles is shown which is actually an appreciable thing. It is informative too. Moreover, the problems of the court in considering an electronic evidence has also been put forth properly.
The article is worth reading as it has briefly described the recent cybercrimes and by knowing them, one will be in a better position to prevent oneself from being a victim of the cyber crimes.
Electronic evidences are much difficult to deal with for the courts as they can be easily falsified or faked. But with appropriate technology and proper ratification of them, they could change the outcome of a case; and this article truly justifies this point.
The author explains the concept of electronic evidence very precisely. The author breaks down the sections dealing with the same in the IT Act, that ensure that only genuine evidence is admitted as valid, as far as possible. The article also deals with the use of electronic evidence in matrimonial disputes.
The article provides the readers with new and interesting information. The above mentioned information is very important and also beneficial from legal aspect. Very well written.
A very well written article . Research for this article is to be appreciated. Very nicely and precisely written talking about most of the aspect of the topic.
An amazingly drafted article, elaborately describing in detail about e-evidences. The author has done a thorough research on the topic. I like to add, the author uses too much of legal language, which might cause a little hindrance to a person of non-law background. Besides this, the author has done a great job in touching almost every sphere related to e-evidences, their pros as well as cons, their administration, etc.
very knowledgeable article about the cyber crime and their precautions, also gives the guidelines to protect from cyber crimes.
The author has well researched on Section 65 B of Indian evidence Act and E- Evidence. The Article is well supported with examples and illustration along a question not yet decided by the Apex Court.
given so much information in a single precise article
This is a very relatable article and talks about cases occurring in the real world. for anyone out there that is a victim of such heinous crimes this could be a great article to read. it proves that things dont only happen hypothetically but in all seriousness as well. it is extremely precise and very informative and educating in general is i would list this under one of those articles that are must reads.
explanation of law is a very good idea to write an article on as laws are drafted in legal language and besides the people of law fraternity find it difficult to understand and so imparting knowledge to people of what actually our law means and in what way or to what extent they can be helpful in providing relief to the injured .knowledgeable a complete information provider about how different evidences can help the victim in getting relief from the culprit as people should know what evidences are acceptable and what not ,having this information can help a lot .good article
The writer has done a wonderful job in this article. It was informative and well-written.The legal language used in this article was perfect but it can be difficult to understand for some people. Overall, a good article.
This article shows that how electronic evidence effective in cyber related crimes .. got to know very useful information .thank you..
NO DOUBT the article gives intricate knowledge about the subject but a brief introduction would be preferred before throwing the provisions of law because not every individual understands the legal language and jargon so a short background would have made it better for sure otherwise very well done.
This article clears the view of electronic evidence and talks about who all are permissible to present in the court of law as if most of us think all electronic evidences are permissible in court which is not correct
The author has precisely taken into account most of the aspects of Section 65 B and explained the concept of admissibility of electronic evidence. Tn addition, an electronic evidence is only admissibile when an certificate is attached to it however this was later on relaxed by the Supreme Court in the case of Shafhi Mohammad v. The State of Himachal Pradesh.
The laws regarding electronic evidence have explained, however, the article lacks a proper introduction and conclusion. The author dived right into the laws without talking about what electronic evidence is.
The article provides the readers with new and interesting information. Very well written.
Electronic evidence is difficult to be trusted as it can easily be faked but it is also useful on the other hand as it can help the officers to get to the culprit.
The article is highly informative ,The article provides various insights to the topic of electronic evidence, which are unknown to the people at large.