Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir Government has ordered that no fresh individual arms license shall be issued by the District Magistrates in the State, till further orders.
As per the Govt order number 922-Home of 2016 Dated July 12, 2018, Principal Secretary of the Government, Home Department, RK Goyal maintained that the district magistrates of Jammu and Kashmir shall take urgent steps to revoke all such Individual Arms Licenses issued to various persons, consequent to the notification of arms rules, 2016 as do not meet all conditions prescribed in rule 11 and rule 12 of the arms rule, 2016.
The order shall not be applicable on the arms personnel like J&K Police, Army and CAPFs.
“The district magistrates shall direct all such persons, whose license is revoked, to deposit any arms or ammunition, with the officer In-charge of nearest police station, in terms of section 21 of Arms Act, 1959, failing which action as warranted under law shall be initiated,” reads the Government order.
This action, as per the order, shall be concluded within 15 days of issuance of this order and compliance reported to the Home Department.
“All the District Magistrates shall ensure strict compliance with the provisions contained in Arms Rules 2016 at the stage of renewal of an arms license,” further reads the Home Department’s order.
The order came in view of number of instances of unearthing of fake gun licensing rackets reported in media, and under investigation though various investigating agencies, particularly ATS, and SOG, Rajasthan, Jainpur.
Read the Complete Order below :
The Government order says inputs have also been received from the CID of Jammu and Kashmir Police with regard to issuance of various large number of individual arms licenses in certain districts of Jammu and Kashmir and accordingly, an enquiry has been ordered vide Govt order number 1307-Home of 2017 Dated April 20, 2017 though Financial Commissioner, J&K Govt, KB Agarwal.
The Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India has also reported indiscriminate issuance of arms licenses within the State with specific reference to certain districts.
The Home Department after taking Suo-Moto cognizance based on data generated from National Database for Arms Licenses (NDAL) portal found indiscriminate issuance of individual lisences in some districts from January 1, 2017 to Feb 23, 2018.
The Divisional Commissioners of Jammu as well as of Kashmir have been directed to verify all the cases of individual new arms licenses issued during the aforesaid period in respect of Kishtwar, Kupwara, Ganderbal, Leh, Rajouri, Ramban, Reasi, and Udhampur in terms of extant legal provisions and furnish a detailed report to the Home Department within a period of one month.
The pending verification by the Divisional Commissioner concerned, the District Magistrate of the District Kishtwar, Kupwara, Ganderbal, Leh, Rajouri, Ramban and Udhampur shall not issue any new individual arms licenses till further orders.
The District Magistrates of remaining districts shall exercise due diligence and care while granting any new individual arms license in terms of extant legal provision and furnish a regular monthly statement to the Home Department by 5th of the succeeding months without fail.
“It was deemed appropriate to have the whole gamut of facts investigated though an impartial investigation agency in addition to aforementioned enquiries, which are already under way,” reads the Government order.
It further reads that the matter has been referred to the State Vigilance Organisation for investigation and further appropriate action in terms of laws.
Citing fresh media reports, the order further reads that certain arrests have been made in conncetion with alleged fake license racket besides it has also been reported that relevant provisions contained in the arms act, 1959, and Arms Rule, 2016 have also not been scrupulously followed in several cases by the concerned Licensing authority while considering the applications for grant of license and subsequent issuance.
“It has been observed that the issues related to grant of individual arms licenses in Jammu and Kashmir has an implication on security of public peace and public security.