Legal liability to pay:
Proof of liability shown in books of account:
No person can be charged with liability merely on the basis of entries in books of account, even where such books of account are kept in the regular course of business. There has to be further evidence to prove payment of the money which may appear in the books of account in order that a person may be charged with liability thereunder, except where the person to be charged accepts the correctness of the books of account and does not challenge them.
Effect of Section 34 of Evidence Act, No. 1 of 1872.
In view of s. 34 of the Evidence Act the appellants could not be saddled with liability for the sum of Rs. 10,000 said to have been advanced to them on March 19. 1947 on the basis of a mere entry in the account. Section 34 says that such entry alone shall not be suffi- cient evidence and so some independent evidence had to be given by the bank to show that this sum was advanced. Such evidence not having been given the claim could not be upheld.
Section 4 of the Bankers’ Books Evidence Act (18 of 1891) certainly gives a special privilege to banks and allows certified copies of their accounts to be produced by them and those certified copies become prima facie evidence of the existence of the original entries in the accounts and are admitted as evidence of matters, transactions, and accounts therein. But such admission is only where and to the extent as the original entry itself would be admissible by law and not further or otherwise. Original entries alone under s. 34 of the Evidence Act would not be sufficient to charge any person with liability and as such, copies produced under s. 4 of the Bankers’ Books Evidence Act could not charge any person with liability.