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SC: Police cannot act as Executive Magistrate

The Supreme Court of India has clarified that police officers cannot act as Executive Magistrates under the Code of Criminal Procedure to maintain peace or, accept or reject bail bonds.
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The Supreme Court of India has clarified that police officers cannot act as Executive Magistrates under the Code of Criminal Procedure to maintain peace or, accept or reject bail bonds. The apex court was surprised when it came across the information that police officers were performing roles of executive magistrates to maintain peace and order.

Aldanish Rein filed a petition in the Supreme Court challenging the powers of the executive magistrate under Chapter VII of CrPC, specifically with respect to Sections 107, 111 and 116. In such cases, executive magistrates arbitrarily reject bonds given by individuals involved in cases of public nuisance and further they were sent into the judicial custody without any remedy.

On the other side, Additional Solicitor General and Amicus Curiae Maninder Singh submitted a detailed analysis before the court where he mentioned the existence of Chapter VII of CrPC in the form of preventive justice. He also accepted that most of the times detention is arbitrary and hence, the executive magistrate must record a definite finding before ordering the detention.

He added that High Courts have frowned upon police offices functioning as an executive magistrate as they have no training in conducting judicial proceedings and hence, imparting of training to such executive magistrates is necessary.
The Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra was surprised that the police officers have been working in the capacity of an executive magistrate and held that they cannot act as the same in the name of ensuring peace, or accepting or rejecting bonds to maintain order.

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Reviewed by:
Shivi Gupta
Published on 24-Oct-17
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