Section 55 CrPC: Procedure for Warrantless Arrest by Deputed Police Officer

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Section 55 CrPC: Procedure for Warrantless Arrest by Deputed Police Officer

This section of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) deals with the circumstances under which a police officer, who has been deputed to perform the duties of a Magistrate, can make an arrest without a warrant.

1. The Code

Section 55 of the CrPC states:

“Any police officer, deputed to perform the duties of a Magistrate, may, if he has reason to believe that any person has committed a non-bailable offence, arrest such person without warrant.”

2. Explanation

This section grants special powers to a police officer who is acting as a Magistrate. Under this section, such a police officer can arrest a person without a warrant if they have reason to believe that the person has committed a non-bailable offence. This is a deviation from the general rule that arrests require a warrant.

The following points are important to understand:

  • The officer must be deputed to perform the duties of a Magistrate. This means they have been given temporary judicial powers.
  • The offence must be non-bailable. This means the accused cannot be released on bail before trial.
  • The officer must have “reason to believe” that the person has committed the offence. This means there must be some credible evidence or information to support their belief.

3. Illustration

Imagine a police officer is deputed to investigate a case of murder. They receive information from a credible source that a specific individual is the perpetrator. The officer believes this individual is involved in a non-bailable offence. In this situation, the police officer, acting as a Magistrate, can arrest the individual without a warrant.

Also Read  Section 326 CrPC: Conviction or Commitment on Evidence Recorded by Multiple Magistrates - Indian Criminal Procedure Code

4. Common Questions & Answers

Q: Can any police officer make a warrantless arrest under this section?

A: No. Only a police officer who has been deputed to perform the duties of a Magistrate can make a warrantless arrest under Section 55 CrPC.

Q: What if the offence is bailable?

A: If the offence is bailable, the officer cannot make a warrantless arrest. They would need to obtain a warrant from a competent Magistrate.

Q: What happens after the arrest?

A: The arrested person must be produced before a Magistrate within 24 hours of the arrest. The Magistrate will then decide whether to release the person on bail or remand them in custody.

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