Production of Public Documents & Records
What are public documents – Documents forming part of the public
documents or in public custody are called public documents. They
also include municipal records. This has been defined u/s 74 of
the Indian Evidence Act, 1872.
According to Rule 106 of Civil Rules and Orders, subject to any
provision of law to the contrary, the originals of public and
municipal records should not be called for when duly authenticated
and certified copies of the same are admissible in evidence and
will serve the purpose for which the records are required.
The matter can be brought to the notice of the court through
the Ld. Assistant Government Pleader that in view of the
fragility of the records, it is necessary for the general
public and the danger of any possible loss or damage to the
public document due to which a considerable government expense
would be involved for the de novo preparation, the records could
at the most be inspected and returned the same day. In case, the
court insists by a written order for it’s production then Rule
108 of the Civil Rules and Orders should be brought to the
notice of the court.
According to Rule 108 of the Civil Rules and Orders, if the
officer from whose custody the record has been produced,
desires its prompt return, the court shall, after the document
has been inspected or put in evidence, cause it to be returned
with least delay to such officer, after the preparation of such
copy as the court may require under Order 13, Rule 2 unless its
detection is considered up to the judgment.