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Overview of PSARA License

The ever-expanding business landscape in India has escalated the requirement of private security. From banks to lavish restaurants, car showrooms to highly-advanced factories, everyone seeks adequate protection to keep criminal elements out of the equation or to ensure proper upkeep of their fences.  This growing safety concern has led to the birth of the Private Security Agencies (Regulation) Act, 2005 (PSARA). The said Act offers the leverage of establishing a legalized private security agency in India. Besides, this Act governs every aspect of private security agencies in India, be it securing registration or hiring candidates for security services.

Fundamental Role of Private Security Agency in India

Private security agencies refer to a business entity that facilitates security services to businesses from different verticals. PSARA Act, 2005 came into effect to underpin a certain standard of professionalism in the regime of security services. PSARA license serves as a fundamental mandate for security agencies in India. Apart from facilitating security services, the security agencies offer adequate training to selected candidates for their security-centric careers.

Eligibility Criteria for Obtaining PSARA License in India

1: In terms of the type of business organization

The following business structures can apply for PSARA license

  • Sole Proprietorship,
  • One Person Company (OPC),
  • Partnership Firm,
  • LLP,
  • Association of Persons, and
  • Private Limited Company.

2: In terms of the role of a Director/Principal Officer

The PSARA Act has underpinned specific criteria for individuals intending to serve the position of Director/Principal Officer;

  • Individual must be an Indian national
  • An individual should not be minor as far as age is concerned.
  • Individual must have ample financial resources to cater to business expenses.
  • Individual must have crime-free track records.

3: In terms of the role of a Security Guard

Individuals intending to become security guards must fulfill the given conditions:

  • The person should be an Indian national.
  • The person should not be a minor and neither over 65 years of age.
  • The person ought to behave adequate training
  • The person must have a seamless service track record without any termination
  • The person should match the desired physical attributes.
  • The person must secure character certificate from a previous firm

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Documents Necessary for Obtaining a PSARA License

  • PAN
  • Provident Fund Registration
  • ESIC ( i.e. Employees State Insurance Corporation) Registration
  • Registration under Shops and Commercial Establishments Act
  • Registration under the Labour Act
  • Proof relating to the identity of the directors as well as employees
  • Copies of the IT returns of the Directors
  • Two passport size photos and PANs of the promoters
  • Proof relating to the address of the Agency Office
  • Affidavit as u/s 7 (2) of PSARA, 2005
  • Security training affidavit
  • Certificate of Incorporation (COI)
  • Signed Memorandum of Understanding i.e. MOU with the authority-recommended training institute

Instructions for Securing PSARA License in India

Follow the below-mentioned steps for obtaining PSARA license in India: 

Step 1: Arrange the applicable documents

The documents necessary for the application have to be collected and sorted accordingly to ensure quick and smooth processing of the application, which will, in turn, speed up the process of obtaining the license.

The documents related to the various registration and details of the directors and promoters have to be legit and in an acceptable format to avert any discrepancy.

Once the required documents are arranged, the application can be filed electronically on the official portal. The presence of the digital signature makes the registration process seamless and hassle-free

Step 2: Enter into a Memorandum of Understanding with a certified training institute

The applicant must enter into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with a certified training institute. The list of the eligible institute is available on the government official portal. These institutes shall provide the required training to the selected candidates. Ex-servicemen have access to a certain degree of relaxation concerning the training aspects of the agency.

Step 3: File the standard application

Once all the above steps are fulfilled, the applicant must file the application (Form-I) with the respective state authority. The said form must be attested with Form-II (application for verification of antecedents). Affidavit in Form-III must be accompanied by Form-I.

Step 4: Complete formalities regarding Police verification

In this step, the applicant is required to file form-I to initiate the Police verification. Where the agency is a company or a partnership, the proposed directors shall undergo Police verification without any exception.

Step 5: Grant of PSARA License

Where the application is attested with the NOC from the police after verification, the respective authority will scrutinize the same and then proceed to either accord the license in form-IV or reject the same in case of default.

Note: Authority usually takes around 60 days to grant this license from the date of application submission. Following are the parameters that affect the timeline of granting the license

  • Quantum of paperwork compliance level
  • Type of license
  • Appointment of Supervisors

Applicants must appoint the supervisors to stay in line with the provisions of the PSARA, 2005. The supervisors are obligated to administer the agency's operation in relation to the work of the security guards. The supervisors so appointed must have at least three years of experience in the defence services.

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The incorporation process is way more complicated than it seems. Make sure to avoid the loose ends while filing the application or uploading the documents since it is a tedious and time-consuming process. You can also opt to avail Corpbiz services in case time is constrained for you, or you are not well-versed of applicable compliances for registration.

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Frequently Asked Questions

The website makes the following data available:

  • The PSAR Act of 2005 and the Central Government's Model Regulations.
  • Regulations made known by the States/UTs.
  • The state/UT controlling authorities' phone numbers.
  • Registered Private Security Firms.
  • Accredited training programs for private security.
  • CAPF Punarvaas: For the purpose of re-employment in security agencies, Private Security Companies have access to the information of former members of the CAPFs and Assam Rifles.
  • Mechanism for Grievance Redress.

By setting up agency login credentials, the Private Security Agencies can submit an electronic application for the issuance or renewal of a PSARA license.

The Private Security Agency Licensing Portal, which the Central Government developed for the online processing of PSARA licensing applications after creating State login credentials, has aided the Controlling Authorities.

The location a private security organization operates in determines the license fee. According to the 2005 PSAR Act, the licensing fee is as follows:

  • For one district: 5,000
  • For two to five districts: 10,000
  • For the entire State: 25,000

The Controlling Authority must receive an application for license renewal at least 45 days before the current license expires.

The Controlling Authority issues a license after verifying the applicants' backgrounds and/or after conducting any further research that it deems appropriate.

  • The private security agency's name and address must be entered accurately into the online application.
  • Scan all files to be uploaded in the specified size and format (.pdf,.jpeg, etc.) as specified in the portal.
  • Complete all required fields, denoted by an asterisk (*).
  • The applicable license fee must be paid electronically using a credit card, debit card, or net banking, among other options.
  • An application should only be submitted once it has been fully completed, the required papers have been uploaded, and the requisite license cost has been paid.

With the exception of Chhattisgarh and Uttarakhand, the PSARA License is valid for five years from the date of enrollment in the majority of states. Chhattisgarh and Uttarakhand give for a calendar year. From 90 days before to the license's expiration date, it should be able to renew the PSARA license.

Every state government is required by the PSARA to designate a Controlling Authority who is either a Joint Secretary in the Home Department or an officer of equivalent position.

Absolutely, every private security company registered under the PSARA Act 2005 is required to post a copy of their license at their registered office in a visible area.

After the agency satisfies the demands made by the authority, every state issues this License. A company cannot operate in a state without a PSARA license. Simply put, it indicates that the license in question is state-specific and that in order to work or operate in another state, one must apply for a PSARA license at the appropriate State controlling authority. For instance, if an agency holds a PSARA License in DELHI, it is only permitted to conduct business there. If the agency wishes to conduct business elsewhere, for as in NOIDA or Gurugram, it must apply for a license in the states of U.P. or Haryana, respectively.

That is not a legal need, and it is also a common misconception. Anyone may apply for this license as long as they meet the requirements set forth by the state's controlling authority. The applicant agency may sign an Agreement with a reputable security guard training facility to provide training to security guards.

Yes, While The Private Security Agencies (Regulation) Act, 2005, is the primary law governing the private security industry in India. However, it stipulates that each state and union territory must designate their own regulating authority and set up their own regulations and procedures for applying for the issuance of the PSARA License.

This is the procedure for getting a "No Objection" from the Deputy Police Commissioner's Office so that you can get a license to run a private security business. The following are the main criteria to consider when evaluating a police verification application.

  • The applicant or its owners are not engaging in activities that are detrimental to public order or national security;
  • A general police record pertaining to the applicant;
  • Any case or complaint that is currently pending.
  • Information about any prior security firms that the applicant, either alone or in partnership, has run.
  • Does the applicant have any unique abilities or qualifications that might help the agency's operations?

No, even if a company, firm, or association of firms is registered in India with a foreign proprietor, a majority non-resident shareholder, a non-resident partner, or a foreign director, they are not eligible to apply for a PSARA licence.

Yes, it is required that the applicant submit Form-I for the verification of its antecedents along with their application to the Controlling Authority for the issuance of a new licence or renewal. Every proprietor, majority shareholder, partner, or director must file a separate Form-1 if the application is submitted by a company, partnership firm, or other association of individuals.

Yes, the applicant must make sure that the guards have the necessary training certificates from State-recognized training facilities. Even after receiving a PSARA licence, the agency must guarantee that the necessary training is offered.

Indeed, every agency is required to ensure that the following physical requirements are not violated:

  • Candidates' weights should be in accordance with the height-weight comparison table;
  • Candidates' heights should be between 150 and 160 cm for women and men; The Gorkhas, Nepalis, Sikkimese, Scheduled Castes, and Scheduled Tribes are free from this requirement, and the height requirement is relaxed by 5 cm.
  • No minimum chest measurement requirement for females, and chest measurements up to 80 cm with a 4 cm expansion;
  • Application requirements include being free from eye and hearing defects, having a knock knee and a flat foot, being able to run one kilometer in six minutes for those between the ages of 18 and 30 and eight minutes for those between the ages of 31 and 40, and being able to walk one mile in fifteen minutes for those between the ages of 41 and fifty and in seventeen minutes for those over the age of fifty-one.
  • The candidate must have the strength and presence of mind to conduct searches, handle objects, and use force to restrain people in an emergency.
  • The candidate must not have any physical impairments that might interfere with their ability to perform their duties as a security guard.

Yes, the applicant has the right to withdraw their application, but they will not receive a return for their application expenses.

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