The Future of the Similar Fact Rule in an Indian Evidence Act Jurisdiction: Singapore
Volume 6 Issue 3 (2013)
In yet another attempt to bridge the gap between the rules of an antiquated statute and the modern realities of practice, Singapore’s Evidence Act was amended in 2012. Certain relevancy provisions were amended to allow greater admissibility of evidence. While new provisions were introduced to act as a check against abuse, oddly some similar fact provisions were left intact. This paper explains why the 2012 amendments have rendered the future of these enactments very uncertain. This paper also suggests a number of tentative recommendations as regards future legislative change or judicial interpretation. To the extent that Singapore’s Evidence Act was largely modelled after Stephen’s Indian Evidence Act of 1872, this paper may be of comparative interest to readers in India, as well as to readers in other Commonwealth jurisdictions that had also adopted the iconic statute.