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Who Can Be Called As Sub-Divisional Magistrate(SDM) & Sub Divisional Officer(SDO) Under Indian Law


A Sub-Divisional Magistrate is a title that is sometimes given to the head official of a district subdivision, an administrative officer that is sometimes below the level of district, depending on a country's government structure. SDM is generally an officer of PCS ranking. Each district is divided into tehsil. It is empowered by the tax inspector, Collector magistrate. All subdivisions (tehsils) are under the charge of SDM (Sub Divisional Magistrate).


In India, a sub-divisional magistrate has several executive and magisterial roles to play under the Criminal Procedure Code 1973.


  • SDM have powers to maintain “Law and order”, and have powers to arrest. (section 44 CrPC)

  • SDM has powers that if there is being any conflicts between groups or any other reason, SDM can fire (aansu gas), and can do “laathi charge”.

  • SDM exercise powers for handle revenue cases, settlement operations of public land.

  • Head of revenue staff consisting of Girdavars, Revenue Inspectors, and Patwaries Tehsildars and who are involved in field-level revenue activities and mutations.

Sub Divisional Officer posts under a land revenue court and is an appealable Court.

SDO is a revenue officer and the chief civil officer of the sub-division. One can be appointed in different departments of government like civil, electricity, engineering, water, (CPWD), central public works department Department of posts, MES (Military Engineering Services), etc.

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