Updated: May 20, 2020

According to Indian law the power of the superior officers of the police and aid to the magistrate and the police is coded under the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 from Section-36 to Section-40. In the sections there is a description of the power of the superior officer of the police and the aid which is provided to the magistrate and the police by law.

Powers of a superior officer of police (Section-36)- Superior Police Officers in rank to an officer of a police station in-charge may exercise the same powers, throughout the local area to which they appointed. The officers may exercise the powers within the limits of his station only.

Public when to assist Magistrate and Police (Section-37)- Every person is bound to assist magistrate or the police officer reasonably demanding his aid- a) Preventing or taking the escape of any such person whom such Magistrate or police officer authorized to arrest; or b) Prevention or suppression of a breach of the peace; or c) Prevention of any injury attempted to committed to any telegraph, railway or canal or public property.

Aid to person, aside from policeman, executing warrant (Section-38)- When a magistrate directed to a person, not to the police officer, any other person may aid in the execution of any such warrant. If such a person near at hand and act within the execution of the warrant.

Public to give information of certain offenses (Section-39)- Every person conscious of the Commission of, or of the intention of the other person to commit any offence. And for so, any person can aid the Magistrate or police officer by giving such information about the intention. Such offences also punishable under any of the following sections of the Indian Penal Code namely, Sections: i. Section-121 to 126, both inclusive, and section 130 (about the offences against the state); ii. Section-143, 144, 145, 147 and 148 (offences against the public tranquillity under Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973); iii. Section-161 to 165 A, both inclusive (illegal gratification offence); iv. Section-272 to 278, both inclusive (adulteration of food and drugs, etc offences); v. Section-302, 303 and 304 (offences affecting life); section 364A (kidnapping for ransom, etc offences); vi. Section-382 (offence of theft after preparation made for causing death, restraint or hurt in order to the committing of the theft); vii. Section-392 to 399, both inclusive, and section 402 (robbery and dacoity offence); viii. Section-409 (offence relating to criminal breach of trust by public servant, etc.); ix. Section-431 to 439, both inclusive (offence related to mischief against property); x. Section-449 and 450 (house-trespass offence); xi. Section-456 to 460, both inclusive (offences of lurking house-trespass); and xii. Section-489A to 489E, both inclusive (offences relating to currency notes and banknotes). In the absence of any such reasonable excuse, the burden of proving which excuse shall lie upon the person so aware. He shall forthwith give information to the closest Magistrate or police officer of such Commission or intention. The purpose of this section the term “offence” includes any act committed at anyplace out of India which might constitute an offence if it’s committed in India.

Duty of officer employed in connection with the affairs of a village to make a certain report (Section-40)- (1) Every officer employed in that village in connection with the affairs of a village and also every person residing in that village. They shall forthwith communicate to the nearest officer or the magistrate in charge of the nearest police station whichever nearer. Any information which he may possess regarding the : a) permanent or temporary residence of any renowned vendor or receiver of the stolen property in or near such village; b) any person whom he knows, or reasonably suspects, to be a robber, thug, escaped convict or proclaimed offender within, or the passage through, such village; c) Commission of, or intention to commit, in or near such village any non-bailable offence or any offence punishable under any of the following sections of Indian Penal Code namely, section 143, section 144, section 145, section 147 or section 148; d) occurrence in or near such village of any unnatural or sudden death or of any death under suspicious circumstances or the discovery in or near such village of any skeleton or parts of the corpse, under such circumstances that a non-bailable offence has been committed in respect of such person; e) intention to commit, or commission, at any place out of India near such village any act which, if committed in India, would be an offence and will be punishable under any of the subsequent sections of the Indian IPC (45 of 1860), namely, sections 231 to 238 (both inclusive), sections 302, 304, 382, 392 to 399 (both inclusive), 402, 435, 436, 449, 457, to 460 (both inclusive), sections 489A, 489B, 489C and 489D; f) any matter likely to affect the maintenance of order of the prevention of the crime or the safety of person or property respecting which the District Magistrate by general or special order made with the previous sanction of the government, has directed him to speak information.

(2) In this section- i. Term ‘village’ includes lands of village; ii. Expression “proclaimed officer” includes any person proclaimed as an offender by any court or authority in any territory of India to which this code does not extend and any act which if committed in the territory in which the said code does not extend would be an offence punishable under following sections of the India Penal Code (45 of 1860) namely, sections 302, 304, 382, 392 to 399 (both inclusive), 402, 435, 436, 449, 457, to 460 (both inclusive); iii. Expression “officer employed in connection with affairs of the village” means the member of panchayat and includes headman and every officer or other person appointed to perform any such functions related to the administration of the village.

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