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Courts Do Not Have The Power To Seize The Passport Under Section 104 CrPC Even When A Criminal Case Is Pending: Andhra Pradesh High Court

Jagriti Sanghi
29 March 2022 6:03 AM GMT
Courts Do Not Have The Power To Seize The Passport Under Section 104 CrPC Even When A Criminal Case Is Pending: Andhra Pradesh High Court
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The Andhra Pradesh High Court has recently reiterated that impounding of a passport cannot be done by the Court under Section 104 CrPC even when a criminal case is pending. The criminal petition was filed under Section 482 of the Code of Criminal procedure seeking to quash the order of the Court of Principal Sessions Judge and to return the passport of the petitioner to allow him...

The Andhra Pradesh High Court has recently reiterated that impounding of a passport cannot be done by the Court under Section 104 CrPC even when a criminal case is pending.

The criminal petition was filed under Section 482 of the Code of Criminal procedure seeking to quash the order of the Court of Principal Sessions Judge and to return the passport of the petitioner to allow him to travel to USA after its renewal.

The Petitioner submitted that he scrupulously complied with the conditions imposed and did not misuse the liberty granted permitting the petitioner to travel abroad.

The Petitioner submitted that the passport was due for renewal and the petitioner intended to visit his daughter after her delivery, who was residing in USA, therefore, sought for temporary return of the passport for six months.

The counsel relied on the decision passed by the Apex Court in Suresh Nand v. CBI (2008) wherein it was observed that impounding of a passport cannot be done by the Court under Section 104 CrPC though it can impound any other document or thing. Moreover, the Andhra Pradesh High Court in Crl. P. No. 1954 of 2020 following the ratio in the aforementioned Supreme Court case held that neither the Police nor the Courts have the power to seize the passport or to direct the accused to deposit or surrender the passport even when a criminal case is pending in the court and only the Passport Officer is the Competent authority to impound the passport.

Justice D. Ramesh, considering the law laid down, allowed the Criminal Petition and directed that the petitioner be returned the passport for a period of six months.

The Karnataka High Court also stated the same proposition in a recent judgment.

Case Title: Ravi Ramesh Babu Versus The State Of Andhra Pradesh

Citation : 2022 LiveLaw (AP) 39

Click Here To Read/Download Order


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