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The Fort William Act, 1881

The Fort William Act, 1881

The Fort William Act, 1881

[ACT NO.13 OF 1881]

[11th March, 1881.]

An Act to provide for the better government of Fort William.

WHEREAS it is expedient to give power to make rules for the better government of Fort William in Bengal, and to provide for the establishment of a Court within the said Fort for the trial of persons charged with breaches of such rules; It is hereby enacted as follows:—

2. The Fort.

The Central Government may, from time to time, by notification in the Official Gazette, define, for the purposes of this Act, the limits of Fort William in Bengal; and in this Act the expression “the Fort” means the area so defined.

3. Chief of the Army staff may make rules.

1[The Chief of the Army Staff] may, from time to time, with the sanction of the Central Government, make rules, to be in force within the Fort, in regard to the matters specified in the Schedule hereto annexed and other matters of a like nature, and may by such rules prescribe, as penalties for the infringement thereof, fine which may extend to fifty rupees, or imprisonment for a term which may extend to four days, or both.

When a sentence of fine is passed under any such rule, the term for which the Court directs the offender to be imprisoned in default of payment of such fine may extend to, and shall not exceed, four days.

When any rule is made under this section, a copy thereof, in English and such other languages as the Central Government may from time to time direct, shall be exhibited in such conspicuous places within the Fort as the Officer Commanding the Fort may from time to time direct.

1. Subs. by Act 19 of 1955, s.2, for “The Commander-in-Chief, Indian Army”.

4. Central Government may invest officer with power to try breaches of rules.

The Central Government may invest any commissioned officer in the Indian Army with power to try persons charged with any infringement of the rules made under section 3.

The officer so invested is hereinafter called the Fort Magistrate.

5. Procedure to be followed.

In all cases under this Act, the Fort Magistrate shall, except as herein otherwise provided, exercise within the Fort the powers, and as nearly as may be, follow the procedure, conferred on, and prescribed for, a Presidency Magistrate by the 1[Code of Criminal Procedure, 1898 (5 of 1898)]; and, subject to the power conferred by 2[section 526 of that Code], every finding, sentence or order of such Magistrate under this Act shall be final.

1. Subs. by Act 1 of 1903, s.3 and Sch. II, for “Presidency Magistrates Act, 1877”

2. Subs., by Act 1 of 1903., for “the High Courts Criminal Procedure Act, 1875, section 57”

6. Power to arrest without warrant.

Any police-officer, or any other person empowered in this behalf by the Central Government by name or as a member of a specified class, may arrest without warrant any person who in his sight commits an offence punishable under this Act.

Power to police-officer to release on bail.

Every person so arrested shall be taken to the police-station within the Fort, and shall be detained there until he gives to the police-officer in charge of such station a bond, with or without sureties, as such officer may require, for a sum not exceeding one hundred rupees, to appear before the Fort Magistrate at a time to be specified in such bond, or until he can be brought before such Magistrate.

7. Jurisdiction of Presidency Magistrates and prosecutions under other laws saved.

Nothing in this Act, or in any rule made hereunder shall affect the jurisdiction of the 1[Presidency Magistrates] or shall prevent any person from being prosecuted under any other law for any offence punishable under this Act, or from being liable to any other punishment than is provided for such offence by this Act:

Provided that no person shall be punished twice for the same offence.

1. Subs. by Act 1 of 1903 for “Magistrates appointed under the Presidency Magistrates Act 1877”

8. Limitation of time for prosecution under Act.

No prosecution for any offence under this Act shall be commenced after the expiration of three months next after such offence has been committed.

9. Validation of penalties heretofore imposed by Garrison Quarter Master.

Rep. by the Amending Act, 1891 (12 of 1891.)


(See section 3.)

(1) Throwing dirt or rubbish of any description into the drains or roads, or anywhere but in the appointed places.

(2) Removing night-soil without a covering or at unauthorised hours.

(3) Camp-followers, servants, and others not keeping the godowns they live in clean.

(4) Performing offices of nature in other than the appointed places.

(5) Bathing, or washing clothes or animals, in the cunette or other unauthorised places.

(6) Selling unwholesome articles of food, grain or drinks.

(7) Adulterating food or drinks.

(8) Making evacuations in unauthorised places.

(9) Rash or negligent driving.

(10) Picketing, training or breaking in animals.

(11) Causing obstruction by vehicles on the road.

(12) Exposing or hawking articles for sale about the roads and barracks or within the Fort without a Fort pass.

(13) Beating drums or tom-toms.

(14) Damaging lamps, posts, masonry or other Government property in any part of the Fort.

(15) Disorderly behaviour in the public thoroughfares.

(16) Gambling.

(17) Spitting pan on any of the public staircases, gateways, walls and verandahs, or defacing in any way the walls of barracks, building or gateways.

(18) Throwing slops into the drains.

(19) Washing cooking-pots at the water-taps and wasting water.

(20) Cooking in unauthorised places.

(21) Hanging clothes to dry on the guns or masonry-work.

(22) Laying out clothes, accoutrements or stable-bedding after the authorised hours.

(23) Destroying the trees, bushes or plants, or climbing trees.

(24) Servants smoking hookas in their masters’ quarters or cook-houses, or keeping such quarters or cook-houses in an insanitary state.

(25) Trespassing on parade-grounds, or making foot-paths across the grass-plots.

(26) Being drunk and incapable.

(27) Fighting, quarrelling and creating a disturbance, or making unnecessary noise of any kind.

(28) Affixing bills and papers on any walls in the Fort.

(29) Cutting grass or interfering with the grass-contractor.

(30) Declining to show a tin pass when called upon to do so.

(31) Being found in the garrison without a tin pass, or being in possession of a ticket belonging to another.

(32) Driving vehicles without lights or with insufficiently-greased wheels.

(33) Swinging or sitting on the chain-fences.

(34) Interfering in any way with the guns, carriages, or piles of shot and shell on the works, or with the packed ordnance.

(35) Mounting the ramparts or parapets or entering the embrasures without authority.

(36) Smuggling liquor into the Fort.

(37) Burning stable-litter or lighting fires except in authorised places and at authorised hours.

(38) Carrying lights except in closed lanterns, or letting off fire-works.

(39) Removing property of any kind or description from the Fort without written authority.

(40) Allowing animals of any sort to stray into the Fort, or to graze within the same.

(41) Slaughtering animals or exposing carcasses or offal within the Fort

(42) Keeping dogs or poultry in unauthorised places.

(43) Buying, selling or receiving any portion of a soldier’s kit.

(44) Disobedience of lawful authority in failing to attend to authorised instructions of the police or of the several sentries posted throughout the Fort.

(45) Occupying buildings of any kind without proper allotment.

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