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Is it possible to arrest a person without warrant?

Samuel Hall

BySamuel Hall

Jun 12, 2023
arrest a person

The term ‘arrest’ is not an uncommon term. Any person who commits any crime or does any act against the law gets arrested. However, the common notion is a person can be only arrested with a warrant, but that is not the only scenario.

In India, the power to arrest an individual without a warrant is governed by the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (CrPC). The CrPC empowers police officers to make arrests in certain situations without a warrant. To understand in a better way, let’s take a closer look at the circumstances under which a person can be arrested without a warrant in India.

arrest a person
arrest a person

Offences which are non-bailable – The first instance where an individual can be arrested without a warrant is if they are accused of committing a non-bailable offence. Non-bailable offences are considered to be more serious in nature and carry a punishment of more than three years of imprisonment. Examples of non-bailable offences include murder, rape, and kidnapping for ransom.


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Suspicion of cognizable offence – The second instance where an individual can be arrested without a warrant is if a police officer has a reason to believe that they have committed a cognizable offence. Cognizable offences are those for which a police officer can make an arrest without a warrant. Examples of cognizable offences include theft, fraud, and assault.

Public nuisance – The third instance where an individual can be arrested without a warrant is if they are causing a public nuisance. This includes situations where an individual is creating a disturbance, causing obstruction to traffic, or engaging in any other activity that is likely to cause harm to the public.

Preventing the commission of a cognizable offence – The fourth instance where an individual can be arrested without a warrant is if a police officer has reason to believe that they are about to commit a cognizable offence. In such cases, the arrest is made to prevent the commission of the offence.

Breach of peace – The fifth instance where an individual can be arrested without a warrant is if they are breaching the peace. This includes situations where an individual is participating in a riot, engaging in unlawful assembly, or causing a disturbance in a public place.

In all the above-mentioned instances, it is crucial to note that the police officer making the arrest must inform the person being arrested of the grounds for their arrest. The person being arrested should know about their right to consult a lawyer and must be produced before a magistrate within 24 hours of their arrest.

In conclusion, while it is possible to arrest a person without a warrant in India, there are strict guidelines that must be followed. The circumstances under which an individual can be arrested without a warrant are limited and the police officer making the arrest must have a valid reason for doing so. It is important for citizens to be aware of their rights and for the police to exercise their powers responsibly.

Samuel Hall

Samuel Hall

Samuel Hall, a renowned name in the world of finance and wealth management, has devoted more than two decades to understanding the intricacies of the financial realm. As the chief contributor to WealthServing, Samuel has enlightened thousands with his insights on wealth accumulation, risk management, and smart investment strategies.