by | Nov 21, 2023


Exploring the intricate realm of disposal of property under the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) unveils a comprehensive legal framework in Sections 451-459. This article endeavors to demystify the nuances of property disposal, encompassing aspects from custody orders to the sale of perishable goods.


Understanding disposal involves the transfer, sale, destruction, or confiscation of property, intricately regulated by Chapter XXXIV of the CrPC. This introductory section sets the stage for a detailed exploration of Sections 451-459.


Delving into the core concept, disposal is articulated as a court-driven process for decommissioning assets due to aging, changes in performance, or capacity requirements. The decision to dispose of property demands meticulous examination and economic appraisal, especially when guided by the provisions under CrPC.


  • Section 451 – Custody and Disposal Order

This section empowers the court to issue orders fitting the case, considering factors like speedy decay. The case of Manoj Kumar Sharma v. Sadhan Roy (1993) highlights the importance of recognizing the real owner, as illustrated in a truck seizure under a hire purchase agreement.

After concluding an inquiry or trial, Section 452 mandates the court to make a disposal order. The focus is on possession rather than deciding property claims, as illustrated by Suleman Issa v. State of Bombay (1954), emphasizing case-specific considerations in confiscation.

  • Section 453 – Payment to Innocent Purchaser

This section addresses the plight of an innocent person convicted in theft or receiving stolen property. It seeks redress for those who, as a consequence of fabricated accusations, find themselves receiving payments.

  • Section 454 – Appeal against Disposal Orders

Section 454 introduces the avenue of appeal for parties dissatisfied with orders under Section 452 or Section 453. The appellate court holds the power to stay, modify, or alter orders causing prejudice to the appellant, extending to Courts of Appeal.

  • Section 455 – Destruction of Libelous Matter

Empowering competent courts, Section 455 orders the destruction of copies related to convictions under specific sections of the Indian Penal Code. This ensures the proper disposal of materials tied to offenses such as libel.

  • Section 456 – Restoration of Possession

In cases of wrongful dispossession by force, Section 456 authorizes the court to restore possession to the rightful owner. The order binds not only the accused but also any other person, including the legal representative, in possession. The case of State of H.P v. Paras Ram (2008) underscores the role of the magistrate in interim possession orders.

  • Section 457 – Procedure in Special Cases

Section 457 grants criminal courts jurisdiction over seized property/articles during the investigation stage, particularly in cases of insolvency, death of surety, or bond forfeiture. The section establishes a procedural framework for law enforcement agencies post-seizure.

  • Section 458 – Procedure for Unclaimed Property

Addressing unclaimed property, Section 458 empowers the court to direct the state government to dispose of such property after six months of no claim. This provision ensures a systematic approach to handling unclaimed assets.

  • Section 459 – Power to Sell Perishable Property

Section 459 addresses the expeditious disposal of perishable property valued under Rs. 500. The magistrate, considering the owner’s best interest, can direct the sale to prevent the wastage of such property.


As we conclude this exploration, it is imperative to recognize the enduring relevance of the provisions governing the disposal of property under Criminal Procedure Code. Sections 451-459 of the CrPC intricately outline the entire process, delineating the responsibilities of both the judiciary and law enforcement agencies. This legal landscape ensures a fair and just approach to property disposal, embodying the essence of time-honored principles in the realm of criminal law.


1-https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/bengaluru/release-3-seized-vehicles-says-karnataka-high-court/amp_articleshow/95461754.cms -THE TIMES OF INDIA

2-https://www.hindustantimes.com/cities/delhi-news/supreme-court-allows-ansal-brothers-to-unseal-uphaar-cinema-hall-after-25-years-directs-trial-court-to-decide-release-within-10-weeks-101682619639289-amp.html -HINDUSTAN TIMES


Written By Archana Singh

I am Archana Singh, a recent law master's graduate with a strong aspiration for the judicial service. My passion lies in elucidating complex legal concepts, disseminating legal news, and enhancing legal awareness. I take immense pride in introducing my new legal website - The LawGist. Through my meticulously crafted blogs and articles, I aim to empower individuals with comprehensive legal insights. My unwavering dedication is to facilitate a profound comprehension of the law, enabling people to execute judicious and well-informed choices.

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