Section 452 of The Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973

A claim of title to the goods which have been seized is a relevant consideration while passing an order under Section 452. Where there are conflicting claims of entitlement to the property, the Magistrate may deal with them or, where it is found that the rival claims need to be resolved after an evidentiary trial, relegate the conflicting claimants to prove their rights and entitlements before a Competent Court. The authority which is entrusted to the Court under Section 452 is judicial in nature. As a judicial power, it has to be exercised for valid reasons keeping in view the class and nature of the property and the material before the Court. Where a claim is made before the Court that the property does not belong to the person from whom it was seized, Section 452 does not mandate that its custody should be handed over to the person from whose possession it was seized, overriding the claim of genuine title which is asserted on behalf of a third party.”

Hon’ble Justice Dr. D.Y. Chandrachud, Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd. v. Suryanarayanan, [Criminal Appeal No. 170 of 2009].