Punjab bans new gun license, celebratory firings; check Bhagwant Mann government’s new rules here

New Delhi: Amid an increase in Gun-centred violence in Punjab, the Bhagwant Mann-led AAP government has decided to review the weapon licenses issued so far within the next three months. The government has also banned the issuance of a new license unless verified by the District Collector personally. This comes after a recent upsurge in gun violence in the state over the past few months. 

A complete ban on the public display of guns is also part of the decision. Additionally, periodic searches in different places shall also happen randomly in the coming days. Celebratory firing will be punishable, in accordance with the decision, as it poses a huge threat to life. 

The Punjab government took a number of actions in response to criticism it received recently from opposition parties regarding the law and order situation, including banning songs that glorify gun culture, violence, and public exhibition of weapons. Directions were also issued for registration of an FIR against those who indulge in hate speech against any community, the order said.

The AAP government has been facing flak from opposition parties for the alleged deteriorating law and order situation in the state.

The state witnessed three major incidents – the killing of Shiv Sena (Taksali) leader Sudhir Suri on November 4, Dera Sacha Sauda follower Pardeep Singh on November 10 and the killing of famous Punjabi singer Sidhu Moosewala on May 29.

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The state’s Home department in a missive to the police head, commissioners of police and senior superintendents of police said the chief minister had issued directions to take steps to maintain law and order in the state.

According to the order, songs which glorify weapons and violence should be completely banned. There should be a complete ban on the public display of weapons including on social media, the order said. A complete ban should be imposed on carrying and displaying weapons at public gatherings, religious places, wedding ceremonies and other events, read the order issued on Sunday.

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The order further stated that there should be a review of arms licenses within three months and if any arm license is found issued to any wrong person, it should be cancelled immediately. In the coming days, surprise checks should be conducted at different places, the order said.

(With agency inputs)