Sections Particulars
Chapter I Preliminary
1 Short title, extent, application and commencement
(1) This Act may be called the Indian Post Office Act, 1898. 2[(2) It extends to the whole of India 3[***] and it applies also to all citizens of India outsi...
2 Definitions
In this Act, unless there is anything repugnant in the subject or context,- (a) the expression "Director General" means the Director General of 4[Posts and T...
3 Meanings of "in course of transmission by post" and "delivery"
For the purposes of this Act-  (a) a postal article shall be deemed to be in course of transmission by post from the time of its being delivered to a post of...
Chapter II Privilege And Protection Of The Government
4 Exclusive privilege of conveying letters reserved to the Government
(1) Wherever within 5[India] posts or postal communications are established by Central Government, the Central Government shall have the exclusive privilege o...
5 Certain persons expressly forbidden to convey letters
Wherever within 5[India] posts or postal communications are established by the Central Government, the following persons are expressly forbidden to collect, c...
6 Exemption from liability for loss, misdelivery, delay or damage
The 11[Government] shall not incur any liability by reason of the loss, misdelivery or delay of, or damage to, any postal article in course of transmission by...
Chapter III Postage
7 Power to fix rates of inland postage
(1) The Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, fix the rates of postage and other sums to be charged in respect of postal articles s...
8 Power to make rules as to payment of postage and fees in certain cases
The Central Government may, by rule,- (a) require the prepayment of postage on inland postal articles or any class of inland postal articles, and prescribe t...
9 Power to make rules as to registered newspapers
(1) The Central Government may make rules providing for the registration of newspapers for transmission by inland post as registered newspapers. (2) For the p...
10 Power to declare rates of foreign postage
(1) Where arrangements are in force with the United Kingdom, or with any British possession or foreign country, for the transmission by post of postal article...
11 Liability for payment of postage
(1) The addressee of a postal article on which postage or any other sum chargeable under this Act is due, shall be bound to pay the postage or sum so chargeab...
12 Recovery of postage and other sums due in respect of postal articles
If any person refuses to pay any postage or other sum due from him under this Act in respect of any postal article, the sum so due may, on application made by...
13 Customs duty paid by the Post Office to be recoverable as postage
When a postal article, on which any duty of customs is payable, has been received by post from any place beyond the limits of 5[India], and the duty has been ...
14 Post office marks Prima facie evidence of certain facts denoted
In every proceeding for the recovery of any postage or other sum alleged to be due under this Act in respect of a postal article,- (a) the production of the ...
15 Official mark to be evidence of amount of postage
The official mark on a postal article denoting that any postage or other sum is due in respect thereof to the Post Office of 5[India] or to the Post Office of...
Chapter IV Postage Stamps
16 Provision of postage stamps and power to make rules as to them
(1) The Central Government shall cause postage stamps to be provided of such kinds and denoting such values as it may think necessary for the purposes of this...
17 Postage stamps to be deemed to be stamps for the purpose of revenue
13[(1)] Postage stamps provided under section 16 shall be deemed to be stamps issued by Government for the purpose of revenue within the meaning of the Indian...
Chapter V Conditions Of Transmission Of Postal Articles
18 Redelivery to sender of postal article in course of transmission by post
(1) The Central Government may, by rule, provide for the redelivery to the sender, without reference to the consent of the addressee and subject to such condi...
19 Transmission by post of anything injurious prohibited
(1) Except as otherwise provided by rule and subject to such conditions as may be prescribed thereby, no person shall send by post any explosive, dangerous, f...
19A Transmission by post of tickets, proposals, etc., relating to unauthorized lotteries prohibited
No person shall send by post- (a) any ticket, proposal or advertisement relating to a lottery; or (b) any other matter descriptive of, or otherwise relating ...
20 Transmission by post of anything indecent, etc., prohibited
No person shall send by post-  (a) any indecent or obscene printing, painting, photograph, lithograph, engraving, book or card, or any other indecent or obsc...
21 Power to make rules as to transmission by post of postal articles
16[(1) The Central Government may make rules as to the transmission of articles by post. (2) In particular and without prejudice to the generality of the fore...
22 Power to postpone dispatch or delivery of certain postal articles
(1) Where the dispatch or delivery from a post office of letters would be delayed by the dispatch or delivery there from at the same time of book, pattern or ...
23 Power to deal with postal articles posted in contravention of Act
(1) Any postal article sent by post in contravention of any of the provisions of this Act may be detained and either returned to the sender or forwarded to de...
24 Power to deal with postal articles containing goods contraband or liable to duty
19[Except as otherwise provided in this Act, where a postal article suspected to contain any goods of which the import by post or the transmission by post is ...
24A Power to deliver such articles to Customs authority
The Central Government may, by general or special order, empower any officer or the Post Office, specified in such order, to deliver any postal article receiv...
25 Power to intercept notified goods during transmission by post
Where a notification has been published under section 19 of the Sea Customs Act, 187822, in respect of any goods of any specified description 23[or where the ...
26 Power to intercept postal articles for public good
(1) On the occurrence of any public emergency, or in the interest of the public safety or tranquility, the Central Government, or a State Government, or any o...
27 Power to deal with postal articles from abroad bearing fictitious or previously used stamps
(1) Where a postal article is received by post from any place beyond the limits of 5[India] (a) bearing a fictitious postage .stamp, that is to say, any facsi...
27A Prohibition of transmission by post of certain newspapers
...
27B Power to detain newspapers and other articles being transmitted by post
(1) Any officer of the Post Office authorized by the Post Master General in this behalf may detain any postal article in course of transmission by post which ...
27C Procedure for disposal by High Court of applications for release of newspapers and articles so detained
Every application made under the second proviso to sub-section (3) of section 27B shall be heard and determined in the manner provided by sections 99D to 99F ...
27D Jurisdiction barred
No order passed or action taken under section 27B shall be called in question in any Court otherwise than in accordance with the second proviso to sub-section...
Chapter VI Registration, Insurance And Value-Payable Post
28 Registration of postal articles
The sender of a postal article may, subject to the other provisions of this Act, have the article registered at the post office at which it is posted, and req...
29 Power to make rules as to registration
(1) The Central Government may make rules as to the registration of postal articles. (2) In particular and without prejudice to the generality of the foregoin...
30 Insurance of postal articles
The Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, direct- (a) that any postal article may, subject to the other provisions of this Act, be ...
31 Power to require insurance of postal articles
The Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, declare in what cases insurance shall be required, and direct that any postal article con...
32 Power to make rules as to insurance
(1) The Central Government may make rules as to the insurance of postal articles. (2) In particular and without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing p...
33 Liability in respect of postal articles insured
Subject to such conditions and restrictions as the Central Government may, by rule, prescribe, 32[the Central Government] shall be liable to pay compensation,...
34 Transmission by post of value-payable postal articles
The Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, direct that, subject to the other provisions of this Act and to the payment of fees at su...
35 Power to make rules as to value-payable postal articles
(1) The Central Government may make rules as to the transmission by post of value-payable postal articles. (2) In particular and without prejudice to the gen...
36 Power to give effect to arrangements with other countries
(1) Where arrangements 37[made] with the United Kingdom, or with any British possession, 38[39[***] or foreign country are in force], for the transmission by...
Chapter VII Undelivered Postal Articles
37 Power to make rules as to disposal of undelivered postal articles
(1) The Central Government may make rules as to the disposal of postal articles which for any reason cannot be delivered (hereinafter referred to as "undelive...
38 Disposal of undelivered postal articles at office of Post Master General
(1) Every postal article received at the office of the Post Master General under sub-section (3) of section 37 shall be dealt with as follows:- (a) if practic...
39 Final disposal of undelivered postal articles
Undelivered postal articles which cannot be disposed of under the foregoing provisions, shall be detained in the office of the Post Master General for such fu...
40 Duty of master of ship, departing from any port in India and not being a mail ship, to convey mail bags
The master of ship, not being a mail ship, about to depart from any port in 5[India] to any port within, or any port or place beyond, 5[India], shall receive...
41 Duty of master of ship arriving at any port in India in respect of postal articles and mail bags on board
(1) The master of a ship arriving at any port in 5[India] shall, without delay, cause every postal article or mail bag on board which is directed to that port...
42 Allowance of gratuities for conveyance of postal articles by ships other than mail ships
The Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, declare what gratuities shall be allowed to masters of ships, not being mail ships, in re...
Chapter IX Money Orders
43 Power to maintain money order system and to make rules as to remittances thereby
(1) The Central Government may provide for the remitting of small sums of money through the Post Office by means of money orders, and may make rules as to suc...
44 Power for remitter to recall money order or alter name of payee
(1) Subject to such conditions as the Central Government may, by rules made under section 43, prescribe in respect of the levy of additional rates of commissi...
45 Power to provide for the issue of postal orders
42[(1)] The Central Government may authorize the issue, in such form as may be suitable, of money orders, to be called postal orders or by such other designat...
46 Power to give effect to arrangements with other countries
(1) Where arrangements 37[made] with the United Kingdom, or with any British possession, 38[39[***] or foreign country are in force], for the issue and payme...
47 Recovery of money order paid to the wrong person
If any person, without reasonable excuse, the burden of proving which shall lie on him, neglects or refuses to refund- (a) any amount paid to him in respect ...
48 Exemption from liability in respect of money orders
No suit or other legal proceeding shall be instituted against 46[the Government] or any officer of the Post Office in respect of- (a) anything done under any...
49 Penalty for misconduct of person employed to carry or deliver mail bags or postal articles
Whoever, being employed to carry or deliver any mail bag or any postal article in course of transmission by post,- (a) is in a state of intoxication while so...
50 Penalty for voluntary withdrawal from duty, without permission or notice, of person employed to carry or deliver mail bags or postal articles
Whoever, being employed to carry or deliver any mail bag or any postal article in course of transmission by post, voluntarily withdraws from the duties of his...
51 Penalty for making false entry in register kept by person employed to carry or deliver postal articles
Whoever, being employed to carry or deliver any postal article in course of transmission by post and required while so employed to keep any register, makes, o...
52 Penalty for theft, dishonest misappropriation, secretion, destruction, or throwing away, of postal articles
Whoever, being an officer of the Post Office, commits theft in respect of, or dishonestly misappropriates, or, for any purpose whatsoever, secretes, destro...
53 Penalty for opening, detaining or delaying postal articles
Whoever, being an officer of the Post Office, contrary to his duty, opens, or causes or suffers to be opened, any postal article in course of transmission by ...
54 Penalty for fraud in connection with official marks and for receipt of excess postage.
Whoever, being an officer of the Post Office,- (a) fraudulently puts any wrong official mark on a postal article, or (b) fraudulently alters, removes or caus...
55 Penalty for fraudulently preparing, altering, secreting or destroying Post Office documents
Whoever, being an officer of the Post Office entrusted with the preparing or keeping of any document fraudulently prepares the document incorrectly, or alters...
56 Penalty for fraudulently sending unpaid postal articles
Whoever, being an officer of the Post Office, sends by post, or puts into any mail bag, any postal article upon which postage has not been paid or charged in ...
57 Punishment of offences committed in a tribal area, Acceding State or other Indian State-Repealed by the Finance Act, 1950
Other offences...
58 Penalty for contravention of section 4
(1) Whoever- (a) conveys otherwise than by post, a letter within the exclusive privilege conferred on the Central Government by section 4, or (b) performs any...
59 Penalty for contravention of section 5
(1) Whoever, in contravention of the provisions of section 5, carries, receives, tenders or delivers letters, or collects letters, shall be punishable with fi...
60 Penalty for breach of rules under section 16
Whoever, being appointed to sell postage stamps,-  (a) takes from any purchaser for any postage stamp or quantity of postage stamps a price higher than that ...
61 Penalty for contravention of section 19, 19A or 20
(1) Whoever, in contravention of the provisions of section 19, 15[or section 19A] or section 20, sends or tenders or makes over in order to be sent by any pos...
62 Penalty for defiling or injuring post office letter-boxes
Whoever places in or against any letter-box provided by the Post Office for the reception of postal articles any fire, match or light, any explosive, dangerou...
63 Penalty for affixing without authority thing to, or painting, tarring or disfiguring, post office or post office letter box
Whoever, without due authority, affixes any placard, advertisement, notice, list, document, board or other thing in or on, or paints, tars or in any way disfi...
64 Penalty for making false declaration
Whoever, being required by this Act to make a declaration in respect of any postal article to be sent by post or the contents or value thereof, makes in his d...
65 Penalty for master of ship failing to comply with the provisions of section 40 or 41
Whoever, being the master of a ship,- (a) fails to comply with the provisions of section 40, or, (b) without reasonable excuse, the burden of proving which s...
66 Penalty for detention of letters on board vessel arriving in port
(1) Whoever, being either the master of a ship arriving at any port in 5[India] or any one on board, knowingly has in his baggage or in his possession or cust...
67 Penalty for detaining mails or opening mail bag
Whoever, except under the authority of this Act 21[or of any other Act for the time being in force] or in obedience to the order in writing of the Central Gov...
68 Penalty for retaining postal articles wrongly delivered or mail bags
Whoever fraudulently retains, or willfully secretes or makes away with, or keeps or detains, or when required by an officer of the Post Office, neglects or re...
69 Penalty for unlawfully diverting letters
Whoever, not being an officer of the Post Office, willfully and maliciously, with intent to injure any person, either opens or causes to be opened any letter ...
70 Penalty for abetting, or attempting to commit, offences under Act
Whoever abets the commission of any offence punishable under this Act or attempts to commit any offence so punishable, shall be punishable with the punishment...
71 Property in cases of offences to be laid in the Post Office
In every prosecution for an offence in respect of a mail bag or of any postal article sent by post, it shall be sufficient, for the purpose of the charge, to ...
72 Authority for prosecutions under certain sections of Act
No Court shall take cognizance of an offence punishable under any of the provisions of sections 51, 53, 54, clauses (a) and (b), 55, 56, 58, 59, 61, 64, 65, 6...
Chapter XI Supplemental
73 Zamindari and other district posts
(1) The Central Government may make rules for the management of any zamindari or other district post. (2) In particular and without prejudice to the generali...
74 General power to make rules and provisions as to rules under Act
(1) In addition to the powers hereinbefore conferred, the Central Government may make rules to carry out any of the purposes and objects of this Act. (2) In m...
75 Delegation of powers, other than rule-making powers, to Director General
The Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, authorize, either absolutely or subject to conditions, the Director General to exercise a...
76 [Repeal- Repealed by the Repealing and Amending Act, 1914]
77 [Saving- Repealed by the Repealing and Amending Act, 1952]
The First Schedule
(See section 7)INLAND POSTAGE RATES LettersFor a weight not exceeding twenty gramsRs. 3.00For every twenty grams, or fraction thereof, exceeding twenty grams...
Foot Notes
l. The Act has been amended in its application to the excluded and partially excluded areas in Assam, the partially excluded areas in Bihar, the partially exc...
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