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CHAPTER V (When Police may arrest without warrant)

When Police may arrest any person without a warrant? What do you mean by arrest, When can a person be arrested by a private person also? What are the various rights of arrested people?

Section 41 of the criminal procedure code 1973 gives the power to police to arrest any person without a warrant, but there are some guidelines given by the supreme court that need to be followed strictly by arresting officers.

Under Section 41(1) of the Criminal Procedure Code, police officers have the right to arrest a person without any order of magistrate or without a warrant

According to Section 41(1)(a), When a person committed a cognizable offence in front of a police officer

According to section 41(1)(b), A reasonable complaint has made against a person who has committed a crime whose punishment is imprisonment up to 7 years with or without fine


If credible information has been received against a person who has committed an offence whose punishment is imprisonment up to 7 years with or without fine


Police Officer have reasonable doubt that this person has committed an offence whose punishment is imprisonment up to 7 years with or without fine

But the question is that is it enough to arrest to any person by a police officer if a reasonable complaint has made, credible information has received or there is a doubt to a police officer,

So answer is No, there is some condition to arrest any person, provision has been given under section 41(1)(b)(i) & 41(1)(b)(ii)

Police officer may arrest any person under section 41(1)(b)(i) & 41(1)(b)(ii), if these conditions are satisfied

  1. According to Section 41(1)(b)(i), Police officers have certain reasons to believe upon such complaint, information or suspicion, this person has committed the said crime, then he may arrest
  2. According to Section 41(1)(b)(ii), if a police officer has satisfied that such arrest is necessary but this satisfaction is based on some principles which follow as
  • According to section 41(1)(b)(ii)(a), Police may arrest such person to prevent of further offence
  • According to section 41(1)(b)(ii)(b), Police officer may also arrest proper investigation
  • According to Section 41(1)(b)(ii)(c), To prevent causing evidence of the offence to disappear or tampering with evidence in any manner
  • According to Section 41(1)(b)(ii)(d), To prevent from such person from making inducement, threat, making a promise to any person acquainted with the fact of the case not disclose anything related case to any police officer or to the court 
  • According to Section 41(1)(b)(ii)(e), When the presence of any person is not sure whenever will be required, then such person may be arrested by a police officer.
Note: Police officer shall record reason to arrest where there is required similarly if an arrest is not required in that case he will also record the reason for not arresting

According to Section41(1)(b)(a), if the credible information has been received against a person who has committed a crime whose punishment is imprisonment more than 7 years with or without fine including death punishment, such person shall be arrested but there is reason to believe upon such credible information.

According to Section 41(c) Who has been declared offender already under section Indian Penal Code, or by state government

According to Section 41(d), he has been suspected to have stolen property under his possession or reason to suspect that crime was caused by such a thing which is in his possession.

According to Section 41(e), who obstructs to police while executing his duty.

According to Section 41(f), who is reasonably suspected of being a deserter from any armed force of India

According to Section 41(g), A person has committed a crime out of India, if such crime is related to arrestable under section 41, it would be considered as he has committed in India

According to Section 41(h), A person who has been released after conviction, violated any rule made in sub-section 5 of 356,

Other Police officers, Private persons may arrest any person, this provision has been given under section 43 of the Criminal Procedure Code 1973,

According to this section, a private person may arrest any person who has committed a Non-Bailable, cognizable offence in front of him or he can be arrested to prevent such crime also or any proclaimed offender.

Meaning of this, anyone committing any crime in our presence, it is our duty to prevent for this he may arrest that person, once he is arrested, will be handed over to a police officer, in case a police officer is unavailable, will have to send him to the nearest police station immediately.

Right of Arrested Person

  1. It is the right of the arrested person to know on which ground he has been arrested
  2. According to Section 41B(a), It is the right of an accused person to know the name, designation, and police station of the Police officer.
  3. According to Section 41B(b), Police will make a memo of arrest, which contains, grounds of arrest, date, and place of arrest.
  4. According to Section 41B(b)(i), On such memo of arrest, It would be attested by a family member of the arrested person or by a respected person of the locality as a witness
  5. According to Section 41B(b)(ii), On such memo of arrest, It would be countersigned by the arrested person
  6. According to Section 41B(b)(ii), In case, If would not be attested by any person upon memo of arrest, a Police officer may inform his family member, friend or anyone requested by the arrested person about his arrest within 12 hours.
  7. According to Section 41D, it is the right of the arrested person to meet with advocate of his choice
  8. According to section 55A, an arrested person may request to Police officer to prepare an inspection report, this report contains if there is any injury mark or health issue,   It is the duty of the officer in charge of the police station to take reasonable care of of the health and safety of the accused. 
  9. According to Section 57, an Arrested person cannot be detained more than 24 hours, the arrested person must be present before a magistrate having jurisdiction in this case
Case Law

Gopal Naidu v King-Emperor, (1923) ILR 46 Mad 605 : AIR 1923 Mad 523 FB.

In this case it was held that A step little short of arrest is the ascertainment of the name and residence of a person.The section applies only to a person (1) who commits a non-cognizable offence in the presence of a police officer, or (2) who is accused of committing such offence before such officer. If the name and address are ascertained or are otherwise known to the police officer,

Goolab Rasul, (1903) 5 Bom LR 597

It was held that the person is to be released on his executing a bond to appear before a Magistrate. If the person does not give his name or residence or gives a name and residence which the police officer believes to be false, he may be taken into custody. He cannot account be detained beyond 24 hours,but should be placed before a Magistrate.

Ins. by Act 5 of 2009, section 6 (w.e.f. 1-11-2010).

In this case it was held that Right of arrested person to meet an advocate of his choice during Interrogation, When any person is arrested and interrogated by the police, he shall be entitled to meet an advocate of his choice during interrogation, though not throughout Interrogation.

Dr Rini Johar v State of MP, WP (Crl) No. 30/2015 as decided on 3 June 2016 by the Madhya Pradesh High Court.

Where the arrest was not made by following the procedure of arrest and section was not followed, the Supreme Court treated it as violation of Article 21 and granted a sum of Rs 5,00,000 (rupees five lakhs only) towards compensation to each of the petitioners to be paid by the State within three months hence

Hema Mishra v State of UP, AIR 2014 SC 1066 : (2014) 4 SCC 453 : 2014 Cr LJ 1107 (SC).

In this case it was held that Arrest of a person even in case of cognizable offences is not mandatory where the offence is punishable with a maximum sentence of seven years imprisonment. The provisions of section 41A make it compulsory for the police to issue a notice in all such cases where arrest is not required to be made under clause (u) of sub-section (1) of the amended section 41. But unwillingness of a person who has not been arrested to identify himself and to whom a notice has been issued under section 41A, could be a ground for his arrest. Legislation has laid down various parameters, warranting arrest of a person, which itself is a check on arbitrary or unwarranted arrest and the right to personal liberty.