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The first hurdle to presenting any piece of evidence to a court is showing that the evidence is relevant. Not everything holds value in the court of law, only certain events, physical or abstract that are brought to courts notice, through legal means hold relevancy.

Relevance is a threshold requirement that must be met before the court can consider the value the evidence may have. Evidence is relevant when it “has any tendency to make a fact more or less probable than it would be without the evidence” and “the fact is of consequence in determining the action.”.

According to Janab’s Key to Evidence, relevancy refers to the degree of connection and probative value between a fact that is given in evidence and the issue to be proved.

Relevant Evidence

All reality is relevant which is equipped for bearing any reasonable assumption as to facts in issue or principal matter in dispute. Sir “Stephen,” said that relevancy means a connection of event as cause and effect. By and large, the realities significant to an issue are thoseactualities that are important for evidence or disproof of reality in the issue. Such realities might be given in proof legitimately or inferentially.

What is truly implied by ‘relevancy of fact’ is a fact that has a specific level of probative power. They are not certainties in issue but rather may influence the probability of reality in the issue.

Relevant evidence is auxiliary or collateral in nature, yet appropriate or likely in offering ascend to a derivation of right or risk by a procedure of thinking.

A fact will be relevant only when it has a link with the facts in issue, but it is not admissible. For example- communication between spouses during the marriage or any professional communication or communication which is made regarding the affairs of the state these all are not admissible but they are relevant. A particular fact is reasonably connected to the main issue it can be easily ascertained by logic and not by law. Therefore logical relevancy signifies a reasonable link between the facts.

The second chapter in the law of evidence, ‘relevancy of facts’can be considered as a tool to identify facts, appropriate to the case, from a plethora of them. These facts are called facts in issue and help in steering the case towards justifiable judgement.


Indian Evidence Act does not give a particular meaning of relevancy or relevant fact. It essentially depicts when one fact become applicable to another one.

Section 5 to Section 55 of Indian Evidence Act gives a few manners by which one fact might be associated with another fact and in this way the idea of relevant fact can be distributed. One fact is pertinent to another fact if they are associated with one another in any of the ways as portrayed in Section 5 to Section 55. In the event, if a fact isn’t so associated, then the fact is irrelevant.

Section 5

Section 5 of Indian Evidence Act states that evidence may be given in any suit or proceeding of the existence or non-existence of every fact in issue and of such other facts as are hereinafter declared to be relevant, and of no others.

This section serves to exclude the irrelevant facts. For example, if ‘X’ were to beat ‘Y’, with a club and an intention to cause his death, the following would form the fact in issue:

  • X’s beating Y with the club\
  • X causing Y’s death by such beating
  • X’s intention to cause Y’s death

The concerned facts in issue are to be dealt with, during the trial and the rest are not relevant to the court. If a suitor were to bring any new unrelated issue, it would neither be accepted nor be heard in the later stage of the case.

Relevant facts (Section 9)

Facts will help in supporting, refuting, clarifying or presenting significant realities are additionally important under this section, for instance, if an individual is absconding away not long after in the wake of being blamed for a wrongdoing, it is applicable as lead ensuing and influenced by certainties in the issue. In Sainudeen v State of Kerala (1992 Cr LJ 1644 Kerala), distinguishing proof of the blamed through his voice was significant under this section.

This section also cover test identification parades (TI parades). Its utility was explained by supreme court in Ramanathan v. State of TN stating that the common and old practice with regards to arranging suspects for distinguishing proof by observers or by the unfortunate casualty winds up fundamental where the personality of the culprit is obscure.

Section 11

Another important section of the Indian Evidence Act which manages adequacy is Section 11.It gives relevance to those facts which are irrelevant as such become relevant because they were inconsistent with relevant facts and their existence in themselves or in connection with other facts make some fact in issue or a relevant fact highly probable or improbable. In Dudh Nath Pandey vs State of UP the supreme court said that the plea of alibi must be proved with absolute certainty, so as to make presence of accused at the Crime Scene, impossible. In brijlal vs. Ram Pratap a seller divided his land into two and sold it in two different transactions to two different persons. The court held that the first sale deed will be considered and it was highly probable that the rest of land was intended to be sold to the second buyer.


The relevancy of facts is an important chapter which deals with the substance of the trials as without facts, nothing can be proved to have happened.  It can be said that all admissible evidence is relevant but all relevant evidence is not admissible. An irrelevant truth isn’t allowable in court. Be that as it may, in specific cases, proof which isn’t relevant under Section 5 to 55 may, in any case, be acceptable.

Evidence is considered as more important in deciding cases over many years. The act was however developed during the rule of the Britishers and hence Leaves a huge room for improvement which might have not been discovered yet.a

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Category Constitutional Law, Other Articles by - Krish Mahajan