Who is a Proclaimed Offender?
Section 82 of the Code of
Criminal Procedure 1973 describes the process of proclamation for a person absconding.
The section, about proclaimed offender, says that if the court is of the opinion and
has reason to believe that the person against whom it has issued a warrant of
arrest has absconded or is concealing himself so that he that he cannot be
arrested, the Court can compel his appearance by publishing a written
When such a proclamation is
published in respect of a person who is accused of one or more specific
offences mentioned in Section 82(4) of the Code and that person does not appear
at the specific place and time as mentioned in the proclamation, such
person may be pronounced as a 'Proclaimed Offender' under Section 82(4) of the
Code of Criminal Procedure 1973.
Description of a Proclaimed Offender under Section
the Code of Criminal Procedure 1973 -
"Where a proclamation published under sub-section (1) is in respect of
a person accused of an offence punishable under section 302, 304, 364, 367,
382, 392, 393, 394, 395, 396, 397, 398, 399, 400, 402, 436, 449, 459 and 460 of
the Indian Penal Code (45 of 1860), and such person fails to appear at the
specified place and time required by the proclamation, the Court may, after
making such inquiry as it thinks fit, pronounce him a proclaimed him a
proclaimed offender and make a declaration to the effect."
Offences for which a person may be declared a Proclaimed Offender by
According to Section 82(4) of the
Code of Criminal Procedure 1973, an absconder may be declared as a Proclaimed
Offender by the Court if he is accused of committing offences punishableunder
any ofthe following sections of Indian Penal Code 1860 -
302 and 304: Murder; Culpable
homicide not amounting to murder,
364 and 367: Kidnapping or abducting in order to murder; Kidnapping or
abducting in order to subject person to grievous hurt, slavery etc.
382, 392, 393, 394, 395, 396, 397, 398, 399, 400 and 402:Committing theft
after making preparation for death, hurt or restraint in order to commit the
theft (382); Committing robbery or attempting to do so (392, 393); Causing hurt
in committing robbery (394); Committing dacoity/ dacoity with murder (395, 396);
Committing robbery/dacoity with attempt to cause death or grievous hurt (397);
Attempting to commit robbery/dacoity when armed with deadly weapon (398);
Preparing to commit or assembling to commit dacoity (399); Belonging to a gang
of dacoits (400), Assembling for purpose of committing dacoity 402.
mischief by fire or explosive substance with intent to destroy house, etc.
· Section 449,
459 and 460:Committing house-trespass in order to commit offence punishable
with death (449); Causing grievous hurt/death while committing lurking
house-trespass or house-breaking (459); Being member of group that causes
grievous hurt/death while committing lurking house-trespass or house-breaking
by night (460).
Consequences of being declared a proclaimed offender:
for non-appearance in response to the proclamation Section 174-A of the
Indian Penal Code 1860 punishes non-appearance in response to proclamation
published by the court under Section 82 of the Code of Criminal Procedure 1973.
The section says that if a person, who is declared as a proclaimed offender by
the Court, fails to appear at the specified time and place as stated in the
proclamation, he shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may
extend to 7 years and shall also be liable to fine.
a Proclaimed Offender Any person who has been declared a Proclaimed Offender
under Code of Criminal Procedure or by order of the State Government can be
arrested by any-
Officer: Under Section 41(1)(c) of Code of Criminal Procedure a
police office can arrest a proclaimed offender without an order from the
magistrate or without a warrant;
Citizen: Section 43 of the Code of Criminal Procedure states that any
private citizen of India can arrest a proclaimed offender and hand him over to a
police officer/station without any unnecessary delay.
The objective of
attachment of property under section 83 is to compel the appearance of the
person who has been proclaimed under section 82 and is avoiding arrest.
According to Section
83 of the Code, the Court that issues the proclamation under section 82, after
recoding the reasons in writing, any time after issuing the proclamation,can
also order the attachment of the property belonging to the proclaimed offender
whether movable or immovable.
The Court may
order the attachment of property and issue the proclamation simultaneously, if
the Court is convinced by an affidavit or otherwise that the person in respect
of whom the proclamation is being issued-
- is about to dispose off either full or some part
of his property, or
- is about to remove whole or some of his property
from the local jurisdiction of the Court.
Court in the case of Lavesh vs. State (NCT of Delhi), observed that when a person against
whom a warrant had been issued and is absconding or concealing himself in order
to avoid arrest and is declared as a proclaimed offender under of Section 82 of
the Code, he is not entitled to the relief of anticipatory bail.
10(3)(h) of the Passports Act, 1967 says that the passport authority can
impound or revoke a passport or travel document if it is brought to the notice of the passport authority that a warrant
or summons for the appearance, or a warrant for the arrest, of the holder of
the passport or travel document, has been issued by a court under any law for
the time being in force or if an order prohibiting the departure from India of
the holder of the passport or other travel document, has been made by any such
court and the passport authority is satisfied that a warrant or summons has
been so issued or an order has been so made.
The Court in Rahul Datta vs. State of Haryanaobserved
that a person on avoiding execution of warrants of arrest under Section 82 (4) of
Code of Criminal Procedure can only be declared a 'proclaimed offender' whereas a person under other provisions of IPC and the laws can be declared to
be a 'proclaimed person' in terms of Section 82 (1) of the Code.
In the case of Smt. Deeksha Puri vs State Of Haryana
the court remarked that the moment a proclaimed offender is arrested or appears
at the place and time required by the Court or surrenders before the Court or
authority issuing warrants or proclamation, the order of declaration of
proclaimed offender would cease to be operative.
The Apex Court, in the case of Jayendra Vishnu Thakur Vs. State of
Maharashtra and anotherhas
been defined the term 'absconding' on the basis of dictionary meanings and that
the primary meaning of the word is, "to hide". It means to depart
secretly or suddenly, especially to avoid arrest, prosecution or service of process.