Admissibility of Electronic Records by Vaibhav Sharma @Lexcliq

So, under the Section 65B of  Indian Evidence Act, 1872talks about the  admissibility of electronic evidence. There have been multiple litigations over the scope and ambit of Section 65B, with divergent views taken by the Supreme court of India.

Under Section 65A of the Evidence Act, the substance of electronic records must be demonstrated as proof as per the necessities of Section 65B. The two Sections 65A and 65B were embedded through the Indian Evidence (Amendment) Act, 2000, and structure part of Chapter V of the Evidence Act, which manages narrative proof. In Anvar v. Basheer, it was explained that as Section 65B starts with a non-obstante provision, if structures a total code for the suitability of electronic proof.

If we talk about the  Admissibility of Electronic Records then section  65A of the Evidence Act gives that the substance of electronic records might be demonstrated as per the arrangements of Section 65B of the Evidence Act. Subsequently, any narrative proof via an electronic record can be demonstrated distinctly as per the method endorsed under Section 65B of the Evidence Act. Area 65B of the Evidence Act gives that despite anything contained in the Evidence Act, any data contained in an electronic record, regardless of whether it be the substance of a report or correspondence imprinted on a paper, or put away, recorded, replicated in optical or attractive media created by a PC, it is considered to be an archive and is acceptable in proof minus any additional verification of the creation of the first, subject to fulfillment of the conditions set out in Section 65B(2) – (5) of the Evidence Act.

 

Technical grounds and non-technical grounds for the Admissibility of Electronic records-

Section 65B of the Evidence Act provides for both technical conditions and non-technical grounds for admissibility of electronic evidence. Sub-section (2) of Section 65B of the Evidence Act lists the technological conditions upon which a duplicate copy (including a print-out) of an original electronic record may be used. These are:

a) when the evidence is created of the electronic record, the computer that produced it must have been in regular use;

b) The kind of information contained in the electronic record must have been regularly and ordinarily fed in to the computer;

c) The computer was operating properly; and

d) The duplicate copy must be a authorized copy  of the original electronic record.

As can be inferred the above conditions relate to veracity of the data. The conditions have a two-fold impact as they-

  • ensure that there has been no unauthorized use of the data
  • the device was functioning properly, ensuring accuracy and genuineness of the reproduced data.

Sub-section (3) of Section 65B of the Evidence Act is self-explanatory and confirms that if the user has been using a networked device either to store or process information, all the connected devices will be considered to be a single device.

Thank-you

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