There are three types of presumptions under the Indian Evidence Act 1872. Section 4 provides these threes types of presumptions namely , may presume shall presume, and conclusive proof.

"May presume" 

Whenever it is provided by this Act that the Court may presume a fact, it may either regard such fact as proved, unless and until it is disproved, or may call for proof of it.

“Shall presume”

Whenever it is directed by this Act that the Court shall presume a fact, it shall regard such fact as proved, unless and until it is disproved.

“Conclusive proof” – Where one fact is declared by this Act to be conclusive proof of another, the Court shall, on proof of the one fact, regard the other as proved, and shall not allow evidence to be given for the purpose of disproving it.

Meaning : 

     Presume means "supposed to be".  In the absence of absolute certainty, we resort  to presumptions. The word 'presumption means 'an inference from known facts.

Definition :

     Presumption can be defined as "an idea that is taken to be true on the basis of probability" or " a belief .

 Some presumptions are rebuttable whereas some presumptions are irrebutable.


1)  X finds Y's Bike in front of a restaurant The,  X may presume that Y is in the Restaurant. When X entered into the restaurant, he found Y, then his presumption is correct/ true. Instead of Y if Z (Y's brother) is found X's presumption is incorrect. Thus presumptions may be true or untrue. In other words presumptions may be rebuttable or irrebutable.

 Classification of Presumptions Under the Indian Evidence Act 1872


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