Explain Judicial Notice and state the facts of which the court can take judicial notice?

(1) Introduction

Qanoon-e-Shahadat Order consists of three parts. In part 1, it has been provided that evidence can be given about facts in issue and relevant facts. In part II, it has been settled that facts, which are judicially noticeable, need not to be proved. And in part III, it has been provided that person, who alleges some facts, remains under burden to prove them. Principle of judicial notice has been provided in part II of Qanoon-e-Shahadat Order.

(2) Meaning of Judicial Notice

If court recognizes something as existing or as being true without having any proof, it is called judicial notice. In other words, judicial notice is that process by which courts take cognizance or notice of those matters, which are so clearly established that formal evidence of their existence is unnecessary.

(3) Explanation of Judicial Notice

Following points are important for explanation of judicial notice:

  • (i) Rule of evidence
  • (ii) Reasons of convenience & expediency
  • (iii) Awareness of fact or matter
  • (iv) Judge’s personal knowledge & public knowledge
  • (v) Court’s Jurisdiction

(i) Rule of Evidence

Judicial notice is a rule of evidence.

(ii) Reasons of Convenience & Expediency

Certain things are so commonly known that any ordinary person is also aware of such things and it is waste of time to seek any proof for such things. It reveals that judicial notice is based upon reasons of convenience and expediency.

(iii) Awareness of Fact Or Matter

For taking of judicial notice of some fact or matter, it is essential that all persons should be aware of such fact or matter.

(iv) Judge’s Personal Knowledge & Public Knowledge

For taking of judicial notice of some fact or matter, judge’s personal knowledge of such fact or matter is not sufficient, but, there should be public knowledge of such fact or matter.

(v) Court’s Jurisdiction

When any persons prays to court to take judicial notice of any fact, court can refuse to do so unless and until such person produces any that book or document, which court considers necessary to enable it to take judicial notice.

(5)Facts Of Which Court Can Take Judicial Notice

Court can take judicial notice of following facts:

  • (i) All laws of Pakistan
  • (ii) Articles of war for armed forces
  • (iii) Course of proceeding of Central Legislature & any legislature
  • (iv) Seals
  • (v) Accession to office, names, titles, functions & signatures
  • (vi) Existence, title & national flag of state or sovereign
  • (vii) Divisions of time, geographical divisions of world & public festivals, fasts & holidays
  • (viii) Territories under dominion of Pakistan
  • (ix) Commencement, continuance & termination of hostilities
  • (x) Names of members & officers of court, & names of their deputies & subordinate officers & assistants
  • (xi) Names of all officers, who act in execution of process of court
  • (xii) Names of advocates & other authorized persons
  • (xiii) Rule of road on land or at sea

 

(i) All laws of Pakistan

Court can take judicial notice of all laws of Pakistan.

(ii) Articles of war for armed forces

Court can take judicial notice of articles of war for armed forces.

(iii) Course of proceeding of Central Legislature & any legislature

Court can take judicial notice proceeding of Central Legislature. Even court can take judicial notice of proceeding of. any legislature, which is established under any law, which is for time being in force in Pakistan.

(iv) Seals

Court can take judicial notice of seals. Seals of all those courts, which are in Pakistan, seals of all those courts, which are out of Pakistan and are established by authority of federal government or government representative, seals of Notaries Public, and all seals, which some authorized person can use by any Act or Regulation, are included in such seals.

(v) Accession to office, names, titles, functions & signatures

Court can take judicial notice of accession to office, names, titles, functions and signatures of all those persons, who fill any public office in Pakistan when they are appointed to such office through notification in official gazette.

(vi) Existence, title & national flag of state or sovereign

Court can take judicial notice of existence, title and national flag of that state or sovereign, which federal government has recognized.

(vii) Divisions of time, geographical divisions of world & public festivals, fasts & holidays

Court can take judicial notice of divisions of time, geographical divisions of world & public festivals, fasts & holidays, which are notified in official gazette.

(viii) Territories under dominion of Pakistan

Court can take judicial notice of those territories, which are under dominion of Pakistan.

(ix) Commencement, continuance & termination of hostilities

Court can take judicial notice of commencement, continuance & termination of hostilities between Pakistan and any other state or body of persons.

(x) Names of members & officers of court, & names of their deputies & subordinate officers & assistants

Court can take judicial notice of names of members & officers of court, and names of their deputies & subordinate officers & assistants.

(xi) Names of all officers, who act in execution of process of court

Court can take judicial notice of names of all officers, who act in execution of process of court.

(xii) Names of advocates & other authorized persons

Court can take judicial notice of names of advocates & those other persons, who are authorized by law to appear or act before court.

(xiii) Rule of road on land or at sea

Court can take judicial notice of rule of road on land or at sea.

(6) Conclusion

To conclude, it can be stated that court can take judicial notice of legal, constitutional, and customary matters. And if court takes judicial notice of any of such matters, then evidence is not needed to prove such matter.

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