What is Private Security Agency Regulation Act (PSARA)?

Last Updated at: Nov 23, 2020
The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), in an official notification in April, 2020, exempted a few essential services from lockdown restrictions. The services provided by private security agencies were also included into the essential services category, provided they had a valid PSARA license. 


Private Security agencies are agencies which provide security services including training of security guards. The operation of private security agencies is governed by the Private Security Agencies Regulation Act, 2005(PSARA). Private security services are increasing with an increase in concerns about crime and terrorism.

Thus private security agencies are also increasing. The concerned state government, in which private security agency is located will have the power to regulate their affairs and may also formulate rules in respect of it. No private security agency can commence a business or provide a security guard without holding a license under PSARA.

According to PSARA, all Private security agencies are required to appoint supervisors to supervise the work of security guards. While engaging a supervisor, a person from the army, navy or air force with at least 3 years of experience should be given preference. The agencies should provide the necessary training and skills to the supervisors.
The Act also specifies the criteria for the qualification and disqualification for a security guard, the health condition as well as about the uniform of the security guards.

Get PSARA License today

Appointment of Controlling Authority by State Government
As per the Act, the State Government can designate an officer, not below the rank of a Joint Secretary in the Home Department of the State or an equivalent officer to be the Controlling Authority for the state. The Controlling Authority is responsible for the issuance of the license, its renewal and regulation of the operation of private security agencies.
After getting an application, the controlling Authority makes such inquiries as it thinks necessary. A NOC will be issued from the concerned police authorities. Once it is issued, controlling authority may either grant the license or rejects it for a reason.it takes about 60 days to complete the process. Every private security agencies are required to commence its activities within six months of getting the license.

How To Get PSARA License In India?

Eligibility for Private Security Agency License
An Indian Company, Firm or Association of Persons is eligible for Private Security Agency license. Moreover, if the agency is a company, then the majority shareholder needs to be an Indian.
In addition, the following conditions must also be satisfied:
•    The person or company cannot be convicted of an offence in connection with the promotion, formation or management of a company.
•    The person or company cannot be convicted of an offence for which the prescribed punishment is imprisonment of not less than two years.
•    The person or company should not keep any links with any organisation or association which is banned under any law on account of their activities which pose threat to national security or public order.
•    The person cannot be dismissed or expelled from Government service on grounds of misconduct or moral turpitude.

All the private security agencies are required to get PSARA License before starting their operation.
At first, the parties have to decide upon the model of the business organization. This decision should be made by considering various factors like Scale, finance, Liabilities, Control, etc. An application for a license can be made for a district or five districts or a state. The application process and the application fees vary with the license area.
The model can be one of the following:
•    Sole proprietorship
•    Partnership Firm
•    LLP
•    Private Limited Company
•    NGO
After deciding the model the parties can proceed for the license under PSARA.

Prerequisites For Psara Includes:
•    Allotment of Pan
•    Registration with service tax department
•    Registration of establishment under shops & Establishment
•    Provident fund registration
•    Employees State Insurance registration
•    Registration under Contractual Labour Act

Documents Required:
•    Affidavit as per PSARA Act
•    Affidavit of security training
•    Logo for the security agency
•    Character verification certificate for the employees.
•    Ownership proof for the principal place of business
•    Identity card for all employees
•    Detailed armed licenses
•    Uniform pattern

After when one is ready with the above prerequisites then he/she is all set to duly fill up the application for granting a license under PSARA.
The Application should be submitted along with a License Fee to the Controlling Authority of the region.

To know more about PSARA License: Click here

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A lawyer with 14 years' experience, Vikram has worked with several well-known corporate law firms before joining Vakilsearch.