Govt revokes ban on issuing arms licenses in J-K

Aadhaar Card to be obtained mandatorily as proof of identity

Handgun - Pistol
Representational Image by Pixabay

SRINAGAR — The Government on Thursday revoked restrictions, imposed on the District Magistrates more than 54 months ago, for issuing fresh individual arms licenses in Jammu and Kashmir.

“In supersession of Government Order No. 922 – Home of 2018 dated 12.07.2018, it is hereby ordered that the restriction imposed on the District Magistrates in the UT of J&K, for issuing fresh individual Arms Licenses, is revoked with immediate effect,” reads an order from Financial Commissioner/Additional Chief Secretary, Home Department, Raj Kumar Goyal (IAS).

All the concerned including District Magistrates (Licensing Authorities), have been asked to adhere to the additional conditions besides following the provisions of the Arms Act, 1959 and Arms Rules, 2016.

As per the report by news agency GNS, the fresh conditions require the District Magistrates, while considering an application for grant of individual Arms License, to necessarily obtain Aadhaar Card as proof of identity.

“The District Magistrates shall ensure that they entertain only such applications for grant of license or for accessing any other service from an applicant, who is a resident of that particular district and in no case, they shall either grant a license or renew a license of an applicant not residing within the jurisdiction of their district,” reads the order.

It added, “For ascertaining the area of residence of an applicant, a specific report from the police, certifying the same, shall be obtained by the District Magistrates before processing any application. In no case, the District Magistrates shall deviate from the Rules 17 & Rule 24 of Arms Rules, 2016, concerning addresses of the licensee.”

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The District Magistrates, it said, shall obtain a report from the CID Wing of J&K Police, regarding the character and antecedents of the applicant, in addition to the police verification prescribed under Arms Rules, 2016, in order to ensure that the Licensing Authority is in a position to ascertain the suitability of granting license in each individual case based on the assessment made by CID, particularly with regard to the conduct of the applicant in social and public life, as also the internal security considerations.

“For the purpose of the above verification, the Special DG CID, J&K shall constitute a committee under his chairmanship to examine each case for grant of individual Arms Licence, keeping in view the prevailing security environment and a report on this behalf shall be forwarded by the CID to the District Magistrate concerned (under intimation to the Home Department), for appropriate consideration, subject to fulfillment of the relevant conditions laid down in Arms Rules, 2016,” the order further directed.

The District Magistrates, the order says, shall personally ensure that every service to be provided under the Arms Rules, including the grant of a license, renewal of license, the extension of area validity, entry of arms/ammunition, registration in case of change of residence of the licensee, etc. are mandatorily done through NDAL/ALIS portal and physical record (duly authenticated) of all such entries which are made on the portal are maintained concurrently in their offices. “Accordingly, all the applications for issuance, renewal or any other arms-related services shall be received by the District Magistrates only through online mode viz. licensing portal NDAL-ALIS.”

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The District Magistrates shall personally ensure that data or detail of any prospective licensee or of a licensee who is accessing any service under Arms Rules, uploaded on the NDAL-ALIS portal, is correct and error-free, it said.

“The District Magistrates, in coordination with the District Superintendents of Police, shall keep a track of all the licensees within their jurisdiction and they shall ensure that the area validity of the license is adhered to by the licensees,” the order reads, adding, “No delegation of powers with regard to issuance/renewal or any other allied services under Arms Rules, shall be made by the District Magistrate to any authority subordinate to the licensing authority in violation of Arms Act, 1959 and Arms Rules, 2016.”

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