AMENDMENTS IN ARMS ACT, 1959
25, Feb 2020
Prelims level : Polity & Governance Mains level : GS-II Indian Constitution- Historical Underpinnings, Evolution, Features, Amendments, Significant Provisions and Basic Structure.
Why in News?
- Amendments in Arms Act, 1959 and Arms Rules, 2016 notified.
- As per the new rules, now International medallists/renowned shooters are allowed to keep additional weapons up to a total of twelve under the exempted category, which earlier was seven.
- Indian shooters have excelled in international competitions. Keeping this in mind, the Ministry of Home Affairs, vide its notification issued under the Arms Act 1959, has made provisions to provide adequate firearms and ammunition to the shooters for their practice.
- The Ministry of Home Affairs vide its notifications dated 12th February 2020 has amended the provisions of the Arms Act, 1959 and the Arms Rules, 2016 to increase the number of firearms that can be kept by shooters and enhanced the quantity of ammunition fixed for their practice for the year. These provisions are expected to greatly facilitate their shooting practice.
- If a shooter is renowned in one event, he/she can keep maximum eight (previously it was four), if a shooter is renowned in two events he/she can keep maximum ten (previously it was seven) and if a shooter is renowned in more than two events, he/she can keep maximum twelve (previously it was seven) firearms under the exempted category. Junior target shooters/aspiring shooters are now allowed to possess two weapons (previously one) of any category in which the person is engaged.
- Apart from the above exemptions, shooters are entitled to possess two firearms as normal citizens under provisions of the Arms Act, 1959.
- Similarly, by amending the provision under Rule 40 of the Arms Rules, 2016 the quantity of ammunition that can be purchased by the shooters during the year for the practice has also been increased considerably.
- Apart from this, the Ministry of Home Affairs has also made other necessary amendments in the Arms Rules, 2016 by amending the Arms Act, 1959 vide the Arms (Amendment) Act, 2019.
- Through these amendments, it has also been clarified that no licence is required for Indian citizens for acquisitions, possession of small arms falling under the category of curio.
- However, appropriate licence as prescribed would be required for use or to carry or transport such small arms.
- Without the endorsement of such firearms in the prescribed licence of the owner, no ammunition shall be sold for their use.