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Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act,1958

Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (PDF File)


(Act 28 OF 1959)

An Act to enable certain special powers to be conferred upon members of the armed forces in disturbed areas in the States of Assam , Manipur, Meghalaya, Nagaland and Tripura and
the Union Territories of Arunachal Pradesh and Mizoram.

BE it enacted by Parliament in the Ninth
Year of the Republic of India as follows :—

1. Short
title and extent.
—(1) This Act may be called the Armed Forces (Special
Powers) Act, 1958.

(2) It extends to the whole of the State
of Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Nagaland and Tripura and the Union Territories
of Arunachal Pradesh and Mizoram.

2. Definitions.—In
this Act, unless the context otherwise requires,

“armed forces” means the military forces and the air forces
operating as land forces, and includes any other armed forces of the Union
so operating;

“disturbed area” means an area which is for the time being declared
by notification under s.3 to be a disturbed area;

All other words and expressions used herein, but not defined and defined
in the Air Force Act, 1950 or the Army Act 1950, shall have the meanings
respectively attached to them in those Acts

3. Power
to declare areas to be disturbed areas.
—If, in relation to any State
or Union Territory to which this Act extends, the Governor of that State
or the Administrator of that Union Territory of the Central Government
in either case, is of the opinion that the whole or any part of such State
or Union Territory, as the case may be, is in such a disturbed or dangerous
condition that the use of armed forces in aid of the civil power is necessary,
the Governor of that State or the Administrator of that Union Territory
or the Central Government, as the case may be, may, by notification in
the Official Gazette, declare the whole or such part of such State
or Union Territory to be a disturbed area.

4. Special
powers of the armed forces.
—Any commissioned officer,
warrant officer, non commissioned officer or any other person of equivalent
rank in the armed forces may, in a disturbed area :—

(a) if he is of opinion that it is necessary
so to do for the maintenance of public order, after giving such due warning
as he may consider necessary, fire upon or otherwise use force; even to
the causing of death, against any person who is acting in contravention
of any law or order for the time being in force in the disturbed area
prohibiting the assembly of five or more persons or the carrying of weapons
or of things capable of being used as weapons or of fire-arms, ammunition
or explosive substances;

if he is of opinion that it is necessary so to do, destroy any arms dump,
prepared or fortified position or shelter from which armed attacks are
made or are likely to be made or are attempted to be made or any structure
used as a training camp for armed volunteers or utilised as a hideout
by armed gangs or absconders wanted for any offence:

arrest without warrant, any person who has committed a cognizable offence
or against whom a reasonable suspicion exists that he has committed or
is about to commit a cognizable offence and may use such force as may
be necessary to effect the arrest;

enter and search without warrant any premises to make any such arrest
as aforesaid or to recover any person believed to be wrongfully restrained
and confined or any property reasonably suspected to be stolen property
or any arms, ammunition or explosive substances believed to be unlawfully
kept in such premises, and may for that purpose use such force as may
be necessary.

Arrested persons to be made over to the police.
— Any person arrested
and taken into custody under this Act shall be made over to the officer
in charge of the nearest police station with the least possible delay,
together with a report of the circumstances occasioning the arrest.

Protection to person acting under Act
.—No prosecution, suit or other
legal proceeding shall be instituted, except with the previous sanction
of the Central Government, against any person in respect of anything done
or purported to be done in exercise of the powers conferred by this Act.

7. Repeal and Saving
(1) The Armed Forces (Assam and Manipur) Special Powers Ordinance, 1958,
is here by repealed

(2) Not withstanding such repeal anything
done or any action taken under the said ordinance shall be deemed to have
been or taken under this Act, as if this had commenced on the 22nd day
of May, 1958

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