Report No. 64
6.35. Section 20-Removal of prostitutes.-
Section 20, which deals with the removal of prostitutes from any place, deserves close consideration. Briefly the scheme of the section is as follows:-
Under sub-sections (1) and (2), a Magistrate, on receiving information that any woman or girl residing in or frequenting any place within the local limits of his jurisdiction is a prostitute, may record the substance of the information received, and issue a notice to such woman or girl requiring her to appear before the magistrate and show cause why she should not be required to remove herself from the place and be prohibited from re-entering it. The notice must be accompanied by a copy of the record referred to above, and the copy is to be served along with the notice on the woman or girl against whom the notice is issued.
Sub-section (3) of section 20 provides as follows:-
"(3) The magistrate shall, after the service of the notice referred to in sub-section (2), proceed to inquire into the truth of the information received, and after giving the woman or girl an opportunity of adducing evidence, take such further evidence as he thinks fit, and if upon such inquiry it appears to him that such woman or girl is a prostitute and that it is necessary in the interests of the general public that such woman or girl should be required to remove herself therefrom and be prohibited from re-entering the same, the magistrate shall, by order in writing communicated to the woman or girl in the manner specified therein, require her after a date (to be specified in the order) which shall not be less than seven days from the date of the order, to remove herself from the place to such place whether within or without the local limits of his jurisdiction, by such route or routes and within such time as may be specified in the order and also prohibit her from re-entering the place without the permission in writing of the magistrate having jurisdiction over such place."
Under sub-section (4) of section 20, a person who-
(a) fails to comply with an order issued under this section, within the period specified therein, or whilst an order prohibiting her from re-entering a place without permission is in force, re-enters the place without such permission, or
(b) knowing that any woman or girl has, under this section, been required to remove herself from the place and has not obtained the requisite permission to re-enter it, harbours or conceals such woman or girl in the place, is punishable with fine of the specified amount.