Section 98 CrPC: Compelling Restoration of Abducted Females in India

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Section 98 CrPC: Compelling Restoration of Abducted Females in India

1. Code:

Section 98 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (CrPC)

2. Explanation:

Section 98 CrPC empowers a Magistrate to compel the restoration of an abducted woman to her lawful guardian or other person having charge of her. This section aims to ensure the swift and effective return of abducted females, especially in cases where they are likely to be forced into marriage, prostitution, or other exploitative situations.

The section provides the following key points:

  • Applicability: This section applies when a woman has been abducted or wrongfully confined.
  • Procedure: If a complaint is made before a Magistrate, they can issue a warrant for the production of the woman.
  • Restoration: The Magistrate can then order the woman’s restoration to her lawful guardian or other person having charge of her.
  • No Prosecution: The section does not authorize the Magistrate to inquire into the merits of the case, or to proceed against the accused for any offense.

3. Illustration:

A young woman is abducted from her home. Her family reports the abduction to the police. A Magistrate can issue a warrant for the appearance of the woman and, upon her appearance, order her restoration to her parents.

4. Common Questions and Answers:

Q: Who can file a complaint under Section 98 CrPC?

A: Any person can file a complaint, including the woman’s guardian, family members, or even a concerned citizen.

Q: What if the woman does not want to be restored?

A: If the woman is of legal age and expresses her desire not to be restored, the Magistrate may consider her wishes. However, the Magistrate has the discretion to decide what is in the best interests of the woman.

Also Read  Section 286 CrPC: Execution of Commissions - Code of Criminal Procedure

Q: What happens to the accused person?

A: Section 98 CrPC does not address the prosecution of the accused. The Magistrate’s sole purpose is to ensure the restoration of the woman. Separate legal proceedings may be initiated against the accused for the offense of abduction.

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