Fact; Fact in issue & Relevant facts
This lecture contains brief on concept of Fact; Fact-in-issue and relevant fact enumerated in Indian Evidence Act. This lecture is important for the purpose of prelims as well as mains. Revise once in a day for memorizing.
1) Meaning of Fact :
The term ‘Fact’ means an ‘an existing thing’ But under Evidence Act , the meaning of the word is not limited to only what is tangible and visible or, is in any way, the object of senses.
According to Section 3 of The Indian Evidence Act, 1872 Fact means and includes :
1) any thing, state of things or relation of things capable of being perceived by the senses.
a) That a man heard or saw something, is a fact.
b) That a man said certain words, is a fact.
2) any mental condition of which any person is conscious
a) A person has an intention to commit murder.
b)That a man has a certain reputation, is a fact.
Rights and liabilities in a judicial proceedings emerge out of fact. Section 3 of Indian Evidence Act categories fact into –
1) Physical facts and
2) Psychological facts.
A) Physical facts – It means and includes anything, state of thing or relation of things, capable of being perceived by senses. In other words, all facts which are subject to perception by bodily senses are physical facts . They are also called external facts.
B) Psychological facts – Those facts, which cannot be perceived by senses are ‘Psychological Facts’ They are also known as internal facts. Examples- Intention (Mens Rea) knowledge, good faith, fraud etc.
2) Facts in issue (Section.3) :
any fact from which, either by itself or in connection with other facts, the existence, non-existence, nature, or extent of any right, liability, or disability, asserted or denied in any suit or proceeding, necessarily follows.
‘A’ is accused of the murder of ‘B’.
At his trial the following facts may be in issue:—
That A caused B’s death;
That A intended to cause B’s death;
That A had received grave and sudden provocation from B;
That A at the time of doing the act which caused B’s death, was, by reason of unsoundness of mind, incapable of knowing its nature.
That A had received grave and sudden provocation from B (It refer to the question, whether B is instrumental/responsible for such a grave and sudden provocation by A, accuating to cause B’s death.)
That at the time of committing the act, whether A was incapable of knowing the nature and extent of the consequences (of his act) by reason of unsoundness or other (Even if A caused B’s death intentionally, A may plead the defence, on the ground that he was incapable of knowing the nature and extent of consequence of the act he was doing, due to insanity under Section 84 I.P.C. , drunkenness under Section 85 and 86 I.P.C etc.)
In short, the questions, which give rise to a right or liability are called Fact in Issue. The fact in issue is also known by its Latin name ‘Factum Probandum‘ or that which is to be proved.
Relevant fact –
One fact is said to be relevant to another when the one is connected with the other in any of the ways referred to in the provisions of Indian Evidence Act, relating to the relevancy of facts. (Section 3 of IEA).
The word ‘relevant’ has two meanings. in one sense, it means “connected” and another sense “admissible”. One fact is said to be relevant to another when the one is connected with the other, in any of the way referred to in the provisions of the Evidence Act relating to the relevancy of facts (Section 5 to 55 of IEA).
There are two kinds of relevancy –
(i) Logical Relevancy – A fact is said to be logically relevant to another when by application of our logic it appears that one fact has a bearing on another fact.
(ii) Legal Relevancy – A fact is said to be legally relevant when it is expressed as relevant under Section 5 to 55 (Relevancy of Fact).