Firearms Management: Long-due system launched
To prevent illegal legal use of legal arms, the government has taken steps to make arms sales and licensing procedures part of an automated system.
On March 22, the Special Branch of Police created a software called Firearms Management System. This software allows authorities to verify legality of firearms online in just a few clicks.
After a directive from the home ministry in November 2018, the SB created the software. This came after a DC deputy commissioner (DC) called on the government to implement an automation system at a DC level conference that year.
According to Abdus Salam (special superintendent of SB), police officers used to manually keep firearms license and inspection records.
This software tracks every legal firearm and bullet. We can easily check a serial number to see if someone is trying to use an illegal weapon. He added that it would reduce illegal firearms use.
People who wish to carry a rifle, shotgun, or other weapons must apply to the DC in writing. The DC then sends the application for vetting to the SB. The DC issues the license after receiving positive reports from the SB.
However, licenses for revolvers and pistols must be issued by the home ministry after approval from the SB or DC.
"We have already had a meeting with legal arm dealers. "We will soon train them on how to use the user manual," said a senior SB official who requested anonymity.
The Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime unit (CTTC), has found links between legal arms dealers and arms smuggling networks in the past. In 2018-2019, they found at least 200 illegal firearms had been smuggled into the nation.
Officials said that the arms dealers illegally imported the firearms and sold them to criminals on the black market after taking out the barcodes.
The CTTC unit also brought charges against nine authorized arms dealers who were selling illegally during the same period.
This system will keep track of all legal firearms imports and exports. Officials stated that the system will track every bullet and firearm imported by legal arms dealers.
There were 54,000 legal arm holders in the country as of December 2018.
The law requires legal firearms owners to inform local police if they move after purchasing firearms. An SB official stated that they don't usually do this, which makes it difficult to track them manually.
The official said that "but now, the police will be in a position to monitor it."
Software can also track illegal arms recoveries.
General secretary of Arms Dealers Association Nasir Ahmed said that they had heard about the system, and were waiting to hear from the SB.
The SB asked the Police Headquarters, through the SB, to contact the offices of the deputy commissioners.
After the DCs have been contacted, you can submit an online application for firearms.
Md Jahangir Alam (additional secretary (police), of the home ministry) answered questions about the request.
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