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Updated At: Jan 20, 2023 06:05 AM (IST)
Since civilian killings by terrorists in Rajouri, security officials have been arming and training villagers to deter militants. File
Jammu, January 19
Days after a terror attack in Rajouri in which seven persons were killed, the J&K administration today revoked the ban on the issuance of gun licences in the Union Territory.
The ban was enforced on July 12, 2018, after it had come to light that the district authorities issued over 2.78 lakh such permits illegally during 2012-16. A CBI investigation is underway in the case in which names of top officials have also surfaced.
Barred in 2018 over fake permits
In an order issued on Wednesday, the administration allowed the district magistrates (DMs) to issue arms licences with a new set of additional guidelines, such as mandatory verification of Aadhaar for proof of identity before any application is even considered.
The order bars DMs from delegating powers concerning issuance, renewal or any other allied services under the Arms Rules to any subordinate.
As per the order, a DM will issue arms licences only to a district resident and in no case shall they either grant a licence or renew one for an applicant not residing within their jurisdiction. The DMs shall seek a specific report from the police certifying the applicant’s area of residence before processing any application, it stated.
“In no case the DMs shall deviate from Rules 17 and Rule 24 of Arms Rules, 2016, concerning the address of the licensee,” the order said. The DMs have also been asked to obtain a report from the CID wing of the J&K Police regarding the character and antecedents of the applicant, in addition to the police verification prescribed under the Arms Rules, 2016.
A committee under the chairmanship of the Special DG, CID, shall be constituted to examine each case for grant of individual arms licence, keeping in view the prevailing security environment, it added.
The move comes in the aftermath of terror strikes in Rajouri after which the administration decided to resume arming the village defence committees in its fight against militancy.
Mortar shell found
Security forces defused a 120-mm mortar shell that was found in Kalsian village in Poonch district bordering Pakistan, officials said on Thursday. Officials said it was Pakistan’s shell that was fired during cross-border shelling two years ago. PTI
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