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THE PETROLEUM ACT, 1934

Title : THE PETROLEUM ACT, 1934

Year : 1934



(1) Whoever-

(a) In contravention of any of the provisions of Chapter I or of any of the rules made there under, imports, transports, stores, produces, refines or blends any petroleum, or

(b) Contravenes any rule made under section 4 or section 5, or

(c) Being the holder of a licence issued under section 4.or a person for the time being placed by the holder of such licence in control or in charge of any place where petroleum is being imported or stored, or is under transport, contravenes any condition of such licence or suffers any condition of such licence to be contravened, or]

(d) Being for the time being in control or in charge of any place where petroleum is being imported, stored, produced, refined or blended or is under transport, refuses or neglects to show to any officer authorised under section 13 any receptacle, plant or appliance used in such place in connection with petroleum, or in any way obstructs or fails to render reasonable assistance to such officer during an inspection, or

(e) Being for the time being in control or in charge of any place where petroleum is being imported, transported, stored, produced, refined or blended, refuses or neglects to show to any officer authorised under section 14 any petroleum in such place, or to give him such assistance as he may require for the inspection of such petroleum, or refuses to allow him to take samples of the petroleum, or

(f) Being required, under section 27, to give information of an accident, fails to give such information as so required by that section, shall be punishable 1*[with simple imprisonment which may extend to one month, or with fine which may extend to one thousand rupees, or with both].

(2) If any person, having been convicted of an offence punishable under sub-section (1), is again guilty of any offence punishable under that sub-section, he shall be punishable for every such subsequent offence 2*[with simple imprisonment which may extent to three months, or with fine which may extend to five thousand rupees, or with both].

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1. Subs. by Act 24 of 1970, s. 14, for "with fine which may extend to five hundred rupees" (w.e.f. 1-8-1976).

2. Subs. by s. 14, ibid., for "with fine which may extend to two thousand rupees" (w.e.f. 1-8-1976).

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(1) In any case in which an offence under clause (a) or clause (b) or clause (c) of sub-section (1) of section 23 has been committed, the convicting Magistrate may direct that-

(a) The petroleum in respect of which the offence has been committed, or

(b) Where the offender is convicted of importing, transporting or storing petroleum exceeding the quantity he is permitted to import, transport or store, as the case may be, the whole of the petroleum in respect of which the offence was committed, shall, together with the receptacles in which it is contained, be confiscated.

(2) This power may also be exercised by the High Court in exercise of its appellate or revisional powers.




Offences punishable under this Act shall be triable, in the Presidency-towns, by a Presidency Magistrate, and elsewhere by a Magistrate of the first class, or by a Magistrate of the second class who has been specially empowered by the Central Government in this behalf.



(1) The Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, authorise any officer by name or by virtue of office to enter and search any place where he has reason to believe that any petroleum is being imported, transported, stored, produced, refined or blended otherwise than in accordance with the provisions of this Act and the rules made there-under, and to seize, detain or remove any or all of the petroleum in respect of which in his opinion an offence under this Act has been committed.

(2) The provisions of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (2 of 1974), relating to searches shall, so far as they are applicable, apply to searches by officers authorised under this section.

(3) The Central Government may make rules regulating the procedure of authorised officers in the exercise of their powers under this section subject, however, to the provisions of sub-section (2).




Whenever there occurs in or about, or in connection with, any place in which petroleum is refined, blended or kept, or any carriage or vessel either conveying petroleum or on or from which petroleum is being loaded or unloaded, any accident by explosion or by fire as a result of the ignition of petroleum or petroleum vapour attended with loss of human life or serious injury to person or property, of a description usually attended with such loss or injury, the occupier of the place or the person for the time being in charge of the petroleum or the person in charge of the carriage or the master of the vessel, as the case may be, shall, within such time and in such manner as may be prescribed, give notice thereof and of the attendant loss of human life, or injury to person or property, if any, to the nearest Magistrate or to the officer in charge of the nearest police station and to the Chief Controller of Explosives].



(1) The inquiry mentioned in section 176 of the 5*[Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (2 of 1974)], shall 6*[unless section 8 of the Coroners Act, 1871.(4 of 1871), is applicable to the circumstances] be held in all cases where any person has been killed by an accident which the Magistrate has reason to believe was the result of the ignition of petroleum or petroleum vapour.

(2) Any Magistrate empowered to hold an inquest may also hold an inquiry under the said section into the cause of any accident which he has reason to believe was the result of the ignition of petroleum or petroleum vapour, if such accident was attended by serious injury to person or property, notwithstanding that no person was killed thereby.

(3) For the purpose of 1*[sub-section (2)] a Commissioner of
Police 2* 3* shall be deemed to be a Magistrate empowered to hold an inquest.

(4) The result of all inquiries held in pursuance of this section
[and of any inquiry held by a coroner in a case to which sub-section
(1) refers] shall be submitted as soon as may be to the 5*[Central
Government, 4*[the 6*[Chief Controller of Explosives]] and the State Government]. Houses agree in making any modification in the rule, or both houses agree that the rule should not be made, the rule shall thereafter have effect only in such modified form or be of no effect, as the case may be; so, however, that any such modification or annulment shall be without prejudice to the validity of anything previously done under that rule.]

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1. Subs. by Act 25 of 1940, s.3, for "this section".

2. The words "in a Presidency-town" omitted by Act 24 of 1970, s. 16.(w.e.f. 1-8-1976).

3. The words "or in Rangoon" omitted by the A.O. 1937.

4. Ins. by Act 25 of 1940 s. 3

5. Subs. By the  A.O. 1937, for "Local Government".

6. Subs. by Act 31 of 1977, s. 4, for "Chief Inspector of Explosives in India".

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Last updated on June, 2016

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