Extra Judicial confession
1) Introduction -
The term confession is not defined anywhere in the Evidence Act. Stephen in his digest of "law of evidence " defines Confession as an admission made at any time by person charged with a crime stating or suggesting the inference that he committed a crime.
2) Definition of Confession -
As already seen the term confession is no where defined in the Indian Evidence Act but the definition of admission u/s.17 becomes applicable to confession also.
S.17 Provides " An admission is a statement, oral or documentary which suggests any inference as to any fact in issue or relevant fact, and which is made by any of the persons and under the circumstances hereinafter mentioned."
If a Statement is made by a party in civil proceeding, it will be called as admission while if it is made by party charged with crime , in criminal proceeding, it is called as a confession..
This the confession is a statement made by person charged with a crime suggesting an inference as to any fact in issue or as to relevant fact. The inference that the statement should suggest that he is guilty of a crime. Confession in short , is a admission by the accused charged with the offence in criminal proceeding . A confession is an admission made at any time by person charged with a crime stating or suggesting the inference that he has committed the crime .
3 ) Kinds of Confession
There are four kind of confession are as follows
1) Judicial Confession
2) Extra Judicial Confession
3) Retracted Confession
4) Confession by Co-accused
The substantive law of confession is contained in S.24 to 30 of the Indian Evidence Act and adjective law of confession is contained in S.164, S.364 of Cr.P.C.
The confession may be divided into following two main classes.
1) Judicial Confession -
A judicial confession is that which is made before a magistrate or in a court in due course of judicial proceeding. Judicial confession is relevant and is used as an evidence against the maker provided it is recorded in accordance with provisions of S.164 Cr.P.C.
2) Extra-judicial Confession (Ss.24,25,26) -
S.24 Confession by inducement, threat or promise when irrelevant in criminal proceeding
A confession made by an accused person is irrelevant in a criminal proceeding, if the making of the confession appears to the Court to have been caused by any inducement, threat or promise, having reference to the charge against the accused person, proceeding from a person in authority and sufficient, in the opinion of the Court, to give the accused person grounds, which would appear to him reasonable, for supposing that by making it he would gain any advantage or avoid any evil of a temporal nature in reference to the proceeding against him
S.25 Confession to police officer not to be proved
No confession made to police officer shall be proved as against a person accused of any offence
custody of police not to be proved against him.
S.26 Confession by accused while in custody of police not to be proved against him.
No confession made by any person whilst he is in the custody of a police-officer, unless it be made in the immediate presence of a Magistrate, shall be proved as against such person.
In this section “Magistrate” does not include the head of a village discharging magisterial functions in the Presidency of Fort St. George , or elsewhere, unless such headman is a Magistrate exercising the powers of a Magistrate under the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1882 (10 of 1882)
4) Case law
1) Heramba Brahma vs State of Assam AIR 1982 SC 1595,
Held - that the extra-judicial confession not trustworthy cannot be used for corroboration of any other Evidence.
Chittar vs State of Rajasthan 1994 Cr.L.J 249 SC,
Held that where confessional statement is inconsistent with medical evidence, conviction of the accused solely based on extra-judicial confession is not proper.
5) Conclusion -
The term confession is no where defined in the Indian Evidence Act. every confession is admission but every admission is not confession. if statement is made by a party is civil proceeding it will be called a admission, while it is made by a party charged with crime in criminal proceeding it is called a confession