By Rupin Chopra and Vidhi Oberoi
The Private Security Agencies (Regulation) Act, 2005 (the Act) is legislation enacted to provide for the regulation of private security agencies so as to streamline their operation within a legal framework. The Act is to be read along with the Private Security Agencies Central Model Rules, 2020 (the Rules).
The Act defines the Private Security Agency as “a person or body of persons other than a government agency, department or organization engaged in the business of providing private security services including training to private security guards or their supervisor or providing private security guards to any industrial or business undertaking or a company or any other person or property.”
The Controlling Authority under the Act should be a person appointed by the State Government who should be an officer not below the rank of a Joint Secretary in the Home Department of the State or an equivalent officer.
Requirements and compliances under the Private Security Agencies (Regulation) Act, 2005 (the Act)
1. Application for grant of license – Application for the license has to be made to the Controlling Authority in Form I accompanied by Form II for verification of antecedents of the applicant and an affidavit incorporating all the necessary details and proving their eligibility along with the prescribed application fee.
Section 6 of the Act prescribes certain conditions barring a person falling under them from obtaining the license. These conditions are:
- The Applicant should not have been convicted under any offense in connection with the promotion, formation, or management of a company:
- Convicted by a competent court of an offence, the punishment for which is imprisonment of not less than two years:
- The applicant should not be engaged with any organization or association which is banned under any law on account of their activities that pose threat to national security or public order;
- The Applicant is dismissed or removed from Government service on grounds of misconduct or moral turpitude; and
- A company, firm or association of persons should be registered in India or a citizen of India.
The Act clearly stipulates a minimum of 160 hours of training to be provided to security guards and proper training facilities must also be ensured by the private agency seeking to obtain license from the Controlling Authority. 
The Controlling Authority may after making necessary inquiries and obtaining a no objection certificate from the concerned police authority, give an order in writing, either granting the license or refusing to grant the same within a period of sixty days from the date of receipt of application. In case of refusal to grant a license, the Controlling authority must give a reasonable opportunity of being heard the applicant by also mentioning the grounds on which the license has been refused.
The license granted under section 7 of the Act shall remain valid for a period of five years.
2. Renewal of license: The Act stipulates a time period of not less than forty-five days before the expiry of the period of validity. After the receipt of an application for renewal of license, the Controlling Authority shall pass an order, after making all the necessary inquiries, in writing for renewal or refusal to renew the same.
3. Cancellation and suspension of license: The Controlling Authority reserves the right to cancel the license on any of the following grounds, where it finds that the license holder has:
- Obtained the license through misrepresentation or suppression of facts;
- Used false documents and photographs;
- Violated the provisions of the Act or Rules made under the Act;
- Misused information during the discharge of his duties as the private security agency to any industrial or business undertaking;
- has been impersonating or permitting or aiding or abetting anybody to impersonate as a public servant;
- has violated the court order or an order of a lawful authority;
Failure to commence business or engage a supervisor can also lead to the cancellation of the license of the private security agency.
The Controlling Authority after being satisfied with any grounds mentioned above may give an order in writing suspending the operation of license for a period not exceeding thirty days, after giving the license-holder an opportunity to show cause as to why the suspension should not be extended till the determination of the question of cancellation.
An appeal may be preferred by the aggrieved person to the Home Secretary of the State Government within a period of sixty days from the date of the order of cancellation of the license. The State Government shall give a reasonable opportunity of being heard to the appellant.
5. Other conditions
Security agencies shall mandatorily maintain a register containing the name and other details of the persons managing the private security agency; the name and details ad salaries of the private security guards and supervisors under its control; the name and details of the persons to whom the security services are provided or other such prescribed details. 
The Controlling Authority has been vested with the right to enter the premises of the private security agency and inspect and examine the place of business, the records, accounts, and other documents connected with the license and may take a copy of any document.  Furthermore, it is mandatory for every security agency to issue identity cards to every security personnel employed by it. 
6. Penalties and punishment
|Engaging security guards or providing security services without a valid license.||Imprisonment extending upto one year or with a fine extending up to twenty-five years or with both|
|Wearing of the uniform of the Army, Airforce, Navy or any armed forces of the Union or Police or any dress having the appearance or bearing any of the distinctive marks of that uniform by the private security guards is prohibited under the Act||Imprisonment for a term extendable to one year or with fine which is extendable to five thousand rupees or both. |
 Rule 8 of the Private Security Agencies Central Model Rules, 2020 read with the Private Security Agencies (Regulations) Act, 2005.
 Section 7 of the Private Security Agencies (Regulations) Act, 2005.
 Section 14 of the Private Security Agencies (Regulations) Act, 2005.
 Section 15 of the Private Security Agencies (Regulations) Act, 2005.
 Section 16 of the Private Security Agencies (Regulations) Act, 2005.
 Section 17 of the Private Security Agencies (Regulations) Act, 2005.
 Section 21 of the Private Security Agencies (Regulations) Act, 2005.
Rachita Thakur, Intern at S.S. Rana & Co. has assisted in the research of this article.