No celebratory firing in UP: HC

Lucknow: Concerned over the "brazen display and misuse of arms" in public places and during celebrations, the Allahabad High Court today restrained the arms license holders of Uttar Pradesh from using their weapons for celebratory firing.

A division bench at Lucknow, comprising justices Abdul Mateen and Sudhir Kumar Saxena passed the order in a criminal matter, showing serious concern over the misuse of arms in public and private functions like marriage, birthday and victory procession.

"We direct that henceforth the arm license holders of state are restrained from using arms in celebratory firing on the occasion of marriage, birthday, victory procession or similar gathering. Should anyone violates this order, he will be personally accountable and will be dealt with in accordance with law by this court," the bench said.

It also directed principal secretary (home) Director General of Police (DGP) to appear before the court on May 3 and apprise about the stand of state government with regard to celebratory firings incidents reported in last one year and action taken there on under the arms act as well as the penal statute. "They will also specify the steps the state government is contemplating to arrest such brazen display of arms in functions as well as in public places like highways, government offices, circuit/guest houses," it directed.

On behalf of state government advocate Rishad Murtaza, contended that the state government has already taken steps to check misuse of arms. The court fixed the next hearing of the matter on May 3. "Since it is a matter of public importance, we direct assistant solicitor general of India to appear on next date of assist the court," the bench said.