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Arms License Scam: Court miffed over the absence of Government Counsels

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The High Court has expressed displeasure and anguish over the non-representation of the government in arms license scam.

While hearing the arms license case, a Division Bench comprising Chief Justice N. Kotiswar Singh and Justice M.A. Chowdhary expressed deep anguish and displeasure over the non-representation of the JK Government and Union of India as their Counsels were not present.

“Neither the UT Government is represented by any Counsel nor there is any representation on behalf of the Union of India when the matter is taken up because of which this court is unable to pass any order,” observed the court.

Advocate Rahul Raina appearing for the petitioners submitted that the administration is shielding the IAS Officers allegedly involved in the arms licenses scam and is sitting over the Prosecution Sanction files deliberately for the last two years and has also posted the tainted bureaucrats on prime positions whereas the Prosecution Sanction was granted against JKAS Officers way back in the year 2021 and several challans have been filed in the CBI Special Courts in UT of J&K.

Advocate Rahul Raina further submitted that there cannot be two laws one for common men and the other for the IAS officers.

The Division Bench observed that it is unable to pass any order in the absence of any Counsel from the government. The Division Bench directed the Registry that a copy of this order be sent to the concerned Ministries of the Union of India and also to the UT Administration for necessary action.

Looking into the importance of the matter the Division Bench directed the registry to re-notify the matter for 23 April 2024.

Pertinently, under this scam, it is alleged that more than 2.78 lakh arms licenses were issued to non-entitled persons in J&K between 2012 and 2016 and all this took place under some top-notch IAS officers. [KNT]

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