Section 37 to section 40 of the Criminal Procedure Code 1973, speaks about Aid to the Magistrate and the Police by the Public


1) Public when to assist Magistrates and police (Section 37) - 


According to Section 37of the Criminal Procedure Code(Cr.P.C) every person is bound to assist a Magistrate or police officer reasonably demanding his aid -

            (a) in the taking or preventing the escape of any other person whom such Magistrate or police officer is authorized to arrest; or

          (b) in the prevention or suppression of a breach of the peace; or

         (c) in the prevention of any injury attempted to be committed to any railway, canal, telegraph or public property.


2) Aid to person, other than police officer, executing warrant (Section 38) -


           According to Section 38 of the code of criminal procedure 1973, when a warrant is directed to a person other than a police officer, any other person may aid in the execution of such warrant, if the person to whom the warrant is directed be near at hand and acting in the execution of the warrant.


3) Public to give information of certain offenses (Section 39)  - 


         Chapter IV Powers Of Superior Officers Of Police Section 39 (1) of the Code of Criminal Procedure Provides that, every person, aware of the commission of , or of the intention of any other person to commit, any offence punishable under any of the following sections of the Indian Penal Code,(45 of 1860) namely -

(i) sections 121 to 126, both inclusive, and section 130 (that is to say, offences against the State specified in Chapter VI of the said Code);

(ii) sections 143, 144, 145, 147 and 148 (that is to say, offences against the public tranquility specified in Chapter VIII of the said Code);

(iii) sections 161 to 165A, both inclusive (that is to say, offences relating to illegal gratification);

(iv) sections 272 to 278, both inclusive (that is to say, offences relating to adulteration of food and drugs, etc.);

(v) sections 302, 303 and 304 (that is to say, offences affecting life);

(vi) section 382 (that is to say, offence of theft after preparation made for causing death, hurt or restraint in order to the committing of the theft);


(vii) sections 392 to 399, both inclusive, and section 402 (that is to say, offences of robbery and dacoity);

(viii) section 409 (that is to say, offence relating to criminal breach of trust by public servant, etc.);

(ix) sections 431 to 439, both inclusive (that is to say, offences of mischief against property);

(x) sections 449 and 450 (that is to say, offence of house-trespass);

(xi) sections 456 to 460, both inclusive (that is to say, offences of lurking house-trespass); and

(xii) sections 489A to 489E, both inclusive (that is to say, offences relating to currency notes and bank notes),shall, in the absence of any reasonable excuse, the burden of proving which excuse shall lie upon the person so aware, forthwith give information to the nearest Magistrate or police officer of such commission or intention.



4) Duty of officers employed in connection with the affairs of a village to make certain report (Section 40) -


According to Section 40 (1) of the Code of Criminal Procedure 1973, Every officer employed in connection with the affairs of a village and every person residing in a village shall forthwith communicate to the nearest Magistrate or to the officer in charge of the nearest police station, whichever is nearer, any information which he may possess respecting-

            (a) the permanent or temporary residence of any notorious receiver or vendor of stolen property in or near such village;

           (b) the resort to any place within, or the passage through, such village of any person whom he knows, or reasonably suspects, to be a thug, robber, escaped convict or proclaimed offender;

           (c) the commission of, or intention to commit, in or near such village any non-bailable offence or any offence punishable under section 143, section 144, section 145, section 147, or section 148 of the Indian Penal Code(45 of 1860);

          (d) the occurrence in or near such village of any sudden or unnatural death or of any death under suspicious circumstances or the discovery in or near such village of any corpse or part of a corpse, in circumstances which lead to a reasonable suspicion that such a death has occurred or the disappearance from such village of any person in circumstances which lead to a reasonable suspicion that a non-bailable offence has been committed in respect of such person;

         (e) the commission of, or intention to commit, at any place out of India near such village any act which, if committed in India, would be an offence punishable under any of the following sections of the Indian Penal Code,(45 of 1860) namely, 231 to 238 (both inclusive), 302, 304, 382, 392 to 399 (both inclusive), 402, 435, 436, 449, 450, 457 to 460 (both inclusive), 489A, 489B, 489C and 489D;

          (f) any matter likely to affect the maintenance of order or the prevention of 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 State Government, has directed him to communicate information.

In this Section (40) 'village' includes village-lands and the expression 'proclaimed offender' includes any person proclaimed as an offender by any Court or authority in any territory in India to which this Code does not extend, in respect of any act which if committed in the territories to which this Code extends, would be an offence punishable under any of the following sections of the Indian Penal Code,(45 of 1860) namely, 302, 304, 382, 392 to 399 (both inclusive), 402, 435, 436, 449, 450 and 457 to 460 (both inclusive)

The words "officer employed in connection with the affairs of the village" means a member of the panchayat of the village and includes the headman and every officer or other person appointed to perform any function connected with the administration of the village.

See also...



Classes of Criminal Courts (Section 6 of The Criminal Procedure Code)


Components of the Criminal Justice System 


Who is Accomplice? Kinds of Accomplice, Is He Competent Witness?

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