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Supreme Court issues notice to Centre, States/UTs on use of unlicensed firearms

The Supreme Court has directed all the states and Union Territories to apprise the court about the steps taken by them to combat the use of unlicensed firearms.

A Division Bench of Justice KM Joseph and Justice BV Nagarathna, while hearing a suo motu plea about unlicensed firearms in the state of Uttar Pradesh, called it a big issue.

The Court ordered the States/Union Territories to indicate the steps taken to deal with the menace of unlicensed firearms and the number of cases over the years.

Amicus Curiae Senior Advocate S Nagamuthu informed that inputs from other states would be necessary to have a holistic picture of the issue, after which the Court passed this direction.

The Supreme Court registered a suo motu case to curb the huge number of possession and the excessive use of unlicensed firearms in the country, while terming the trend as “disturbing”.

The Apex Court has also issued separate directions to the Director General of Police of States, apart from the Ministry of Home Affairs for filing separate affidavit on two aspects – steps taken and the number of cases.

The Union Ministry was asked to file a counter-affidavit on better implementation of the Arms Act and suggestions to strengthen the legislation.

The Apex court of the country said the use of unlicensed firearms should be curbed at all costs.

The matter will be heard next in three weeks.

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