Fake Gun License Scam || ‘Missing’ files upset valid license holders seeking renewal

VISHAL. Updated: 9/26/2020 11:07:09 AM Front Page

Jammu: Seeking renewal, the valid gun license holders are feeling the heat as their files are allegedly missing from the offices of various district administrations which are in possession of the Central Bureau of Investigation in view of ongoing investigation into much infamous case of fake gun licenses that involved the names of J&K Cadre Civil Servants.
The high profiled case raised eyebrows among bureaucratic set up after an involvement of two IAS officers of J&K cadre was surfaced.
However, the gun license holders, as per sources, are running pillar to post to get their documents renew but, as files are in possession of the CBI as part of the ongoing investigation, the process cannot be initiated.
“Thousands of gun licenses issued from offices of different district administrations have expired but the same are not being renewed even many have applied for it, due to the missing record, which is in possession of the CBI for investigation,” sources here told ‘The News Now’.
They said that several valid and genuine gun licenses have expired this year from January till August but they are not being renewed in view of ongoing investigation into fake gun licensee case by the CBI.
Pertinently, 2010 batch Jammu and Kashmir cadre IAS officer Rajiv Ranjan, who also served as Deputy Commissioner Jammu, was arrested by the CBI in connection with the Jammu and Kashmir arms licenses case has allegedly issued more than 30,000 fake licenses in a span of two year.
These licenses were just not issued to residents of Kashmir but also to people living in Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and other states by showing them as Kashmiris.
Sources further said, “the license holders are applying for renewal at their respective districts but the process is being put on hold due to non-availability of the files, which are reportedly with CBI.”
They further said, “CBI team investigating the matter have taken away the files to ascertain the nature of the licenses issued by the arrested officers and investigating the involvement of other officers, if any, who had previously served as District Magistrates.”
In a nationwide action last year, CBI also conducted searches at around 110 places in 19 State and Union Territories in around 30 separate cases relating to corruption, criminal mis-conduct and arms licenses scam in Jammu and Kashmir.
In Jammu and Kashmir searches were conducted at 11 places, including Srinagar, Udhampur, Jammu at the locations of private gun houses in an on-going investigation of two arms license cases registered on the consent of J&K government.
Two former District Magistrates arrested in the arms license case, was remanded to police custody in March this year by the special judge of CBI cases in Srinagar.
CBI had registered a case on the consent of J&K Government and further Notification from the Centre and taken over the investigation of FIR number 18 of 2018, earlier registered at Police Station Vigilance Organisation Kashmir.
The allegations in the case, as per CBI, were that during the period 2012 to 2016, the Deputy Commissioners of various districts of J&K, had fraudulently and illegally issued bulk arms licenses in lieu of monetary consideration.
Involvement of many IAS/IPS officers, from Rajasthan and Haryana, posted in J&K, surfaced during the ATS investigations, sources said, adding “more arrests cannot be ruled out in coming days in inter-state arms licenses scandal”.
“The genuine license holders are pressing hard to the district administrations for renewal,” sources said adding that several requests have also been made by concerned administrative heads seeking files from the CBI but rejected with a plea that it is a matter of national security and cannot be handed over unless the investigation is complete as more arrests are on card.
The CBI sleuths last year also conducted raids at Srinagar, Jammu, Barmulla, Udhampur, Kishtwar, Shopian, Rajouri, Doda and Pulwama in an ongoing investigation of two cases related to allegations of issuance of around two lakh arms licenses from different districts of J&K by their respective Deputy Commissioners.
CBI is probing licenses that were issued in the last decade from districts of the militancy-hit region, officials said.
It is alleged that the then public servants received illegal gratification in issuance of licenses to non-residents of J&K in violation of rules.

Updated On 9/26/2020 11:09:27 AM

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