While driving with my friend we were stopped by a traffic police. He claimed that my friend who was driving breached the traffic rules but my friend denied this. They started arguing and I recorded the conversation between them because the police was forcing my friend to admit the breach of traffic rules. Is it lawful to tape record or video record a conversation between a traffic police and driver by using a smart phone or other electronic devices? Can such video recording or tape recording be admitted by the Court as evidence?
There is no law which prohibits recording a conversation between a traffic police and a driver. The admissibility of electronic evidence is governed by the Electronic Transactions Act, 2015. Under section 18 of the Electronic Transaction Act, all what is needs to be proved in order to have the electronic evidence admitted in Court as exhibit is the reliability of the electronic evidence regarding the way the recording was taken and how it was kept until it was brought to Court as evidence. The witness who seeks to produce electronic evidence must first lead evidence that rules out the possibility of manipulation of the electronic evidence before seeking to tender it. Before seeking to tender the electronic evidence, the witness should satisfy the Court by evidence that the electronic evidence sought to be tendered is authentic. This is done by proving the mechanical working condition of the device at the time of recording, how the recording was done, by whom it was done and stored until the evidence was produced in Court. If the electronic record was transformed into secondary media like flash, the mode of transformation into secondary media should also be proved.