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A Proclaimed Offender (P.O) proceeding is a process of the court through which the person is declared proclaimed offender and directs the concerned police officials to arrest the person named in the proceeding and produce him before the court and the name and details of the proclaimed offender are published in the newspapers  declaring him/her to be a proclaimed offender.

What are Proclaimed offender (P.O) proceedings?

When “Somebody”(accused) is not giving the appearance in Court after issuing the bailable warrant, then the court will Issue Non-Bailable Warrants against the person/accused under Section 70 of the Code of Criminal procedure. This Warrant under Section 70 will give powers to the Police to arrest the accused at any moment at any place [even by breaking doors and walls of your house or the place where you are trying to hide from the arrest].

If even after Non-Bailable Warrants accused doesn’t care to appear in Court then the Judge can declare the accused “Proclaimed Offender” under Section 82 and 83 of the Code of Criminal procedure.

Meaning of proclaimed offender or consequence of being a proclaimed offender –

(1) The meaning of being declared as proclaimed Offender is that accused can be arrested by ANY citizen of India at any time or any place.

(2) The Passport of the proclaimed offender will be automatically confiscated so that the offender doesn’t go out of the country.

(3) If at the time of being declared proclaimed offender person was doing any Government Job — he will be expelled and if not he cannot apply for any government job at any level throughout the life– even if you are declared proclaimed offender only for One day.

When the court issue proclamation against the person/accused?

If any court has reason to believe (whether after taking evidence or not) that any person against whom a warrant has been issued by it has absconded or is concealing himself so that such warrant cannot be executed, such court may publish a written proclamation requiring him to appear at a specified place and at a specified time not less than thirty days from the date of publishing such proclamation.

Procedure to publishing the proclamation notice by the court-

The proclamation shall be published as follows-

(1) It shall be publicly read in some conspicuous place of the town or village in which such person ordinarily resides.

(2) It shall be affixed to some conspicuous part of the house or homestead in which such person ordinarily resides or to some conspicuous place of such town or village.

(3) A copy thereof shall be affixed to some conspicuous part of the Courthouse.

(4) The court may also, if it thinks fit, direct a copy of the proclamation to be published in a daily newspaper circulating in the place in which such person ordinarily resides.

(5) A statement in writing by the court issuing the proclamation to the effect that the proclamation was duly published on a specified day, in the manner specified in Clause (i) of subsection (2), shall be conclusive evidence that the requirements of this section have been complied with, and that the proclamation was published on such day.

(6) Where a proclamation published under sub-section (1) is in respect of a person accused of an offence punishable under Sections 302, 304, 364, 367, 382, 392, 393, 394, 395, 396, 397, 398, 399, 400, 402, 436, 499, 459 or 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 offender and make a declaration to that effect.

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