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Know your law: Warrant of Arrest

In the previous article we discussed about the summons. If the person summoned fails to appear before the Court the warrant of arrest will be issued against him. Every warrant of arrest issued by a Court shall be in writing and signed by the presiding officer of such Court and shall bear the seal of the Court. Every such warrant shall remain in force until it is cancelled by the Court, which issued it, or until it is executed.

Age of person to be detained: In Sanjay Suri Vs. Delhi Administration, the Supreme Court directed every magistrate or trial judge authorized to issue warrants for detention of prisoners to ensure that warrant of detention must specify the age of person to be detained, jail authorities can refuse to honour a warrant if the age of person remanded to jail custody is not indicated.

Any Court issuing a warrant for the arrest of any person may in its discretion direct by endorsement on the warrant that, if such person executes a bond with sufficient sureties for his attendance before the Court at a specified time and thereafter until otherwise directed by the Court, the officer to whom the warrant is directed shall take such security and shall release such person from custody. The endorsement shall state
1. Number of sureties.
2. The amount in which they and the person for whose arrest the warrant is issued, are to be bound respectively.
3. The time at which he is to appear before the Court.

Whenever security is taken under this section, the officer to whom the warrant is directed shall forward the bond to the Court.

Warrants to whom directed: A warrant of arrest shall ordinarily be directed to one or more police officers; but the Court issuing such a warrant may, if its immediate execution is necessary and no police officer is immediately available, direct it to any other person or persons, and such person or persons shall execute the same. When a warrant is directed to more officers or persons than one, it may be executed by all, or by any one or more of them.

The Chief Judicial Magistrate or a Magistrate of the First Class may direct a warrant to any person within his local jurisdiction for the arrest of any escaped convict, proclaimed offender or of any person, who is accused of a non-bailable offence and is evading arrest. Such person shall acknowledge in writing the receipt of warrant, and shall execute it if the person for whose arrest it was issued, is in, or enters on, any land or other property under his charge. When the person against whom such warrant is issued is arrested, he shall be made over with the warrant to the nearest police officer, who shall cause him to be taken before a magistrate having jurisdiction in the case, unless security is taken.

The police officer or other person executing a warrant of arrest shall without unnecessary delay bring the person arrested before the Court before which he is required by law to produce such person. Such delay shall not, in any case, exceed twenty-four hours exclusive of the time necessary for the journey from the place of arrest to the magistrate's court.

Where warrant may be executed: A warrant of arrest may be executed at any place in India.

Warrant forwarded for execution outside jurisdiction: When a warrant is to be executed outside the local jurisdiction of the Court issuing it, such Court may, instead of directing the warrant to a police officer within its jurisdiction, forwarded by post or otherwise to any Executive Magistrate or District Superintendent of Police or Commissioner of Police within the local limits of whose jurisdiction it is to be executed; and the Executive Magistrate or District Superintendent or Commissioner shall endorse his name thereon, and if practicable, cause it to be executed in the manner hereinbefore provided.

Warrant directed to police officer for execution outside jurisdiction: When a warrant directed to a police officer is to be executed beyond the local jurisdiction of the Court issuing the same, he shall ordinarily take it for endorsement either to an Executive Magistrate or to a police officer not below the rank of an officer in charge of a police station, within the local limits of whose jurisdiction the warrant is to be executed.

Such Magistrate or police officer shall endorse his name thereon and such endorsement shall be sufficient authority to the police officer to whom the warrant is directed to execute the same, and the local police shall, if so required, assist such officer in executing such warrant.

Procedure by Magistrate before whom such person arrested is brought: The Executive Magistrate or District Superintendent of Police or Commissioner of Police shall, if the person arrested appears to be the person intended by the Court, which issued the warrant, direct his removal in custody to such Court. It should be noted that the offence is bailable, and such person is ready and willing to give surety to the satisfaction of such magistrate, District Superintendent or Commissioner, or a direction has been endorsed on the warrant and such person is ready and willing to give the security required by such direction, the Magistrate, District Superintendent or Commissioner shall take such bail or security, as the case may be, and forward the bond to the Court which issued that warrant.
If the offence is non-bailable one, it shall be lawful for the Chief Judicial Magistrate, or the Sessions Judge, of the district in which the arrest is made on consideration of the information and the documents, to release such person on bail.

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