By Our Staff Reporter
Guwahati, January 28: Call it an intelligence failure or laxity on the part of administration, an arms factory located in the heart of the city, was manufacturing and selling firearms without permission.
A team of officials from the Guwahati metropolitan administration and police, led by magistrate Mukul Kathar, today sealed the manufacturing unit of Indian tiol Arms Company located at Rehabari.
“We have sealed the factory and the godown where 919 single barrel guns and 178 double barrel guns were seized. The operation was carried out following an order from the Gauhati High Court,” the magistrate said. The officials also seized the stock registers of the factory.
Later, an official statement from the administration said the company did not have permission from the Union Home Ministry. “The State Home department had also recently cancelled the license of the company,” the statement said.
Sources said that firearms were being manufactured in the factory even though it did not have the requisite permission. The license of the factory had expired four/five years back.
“We will now conduct an inquiry to find out how many firearms were manufactured by the firm after the expiry of its license. We also need to find out where were those firearms were supplied,” Kamrup (metro) deputy commissioner M Angamuthu told The Sentinel.
Official sources said the license of the factory was not renewed in the wake of a family feud between two brothers over the ownership of the factory. “The family feud resulted in several anomalies,” the official said.
The district administration had in 2012 temporarily barred two arms dealers in the city, including this firm, from selling firearms and ammunition, for their alleged involvement in illegal arms sale.
The CID was entrusted with investigating the charges against the arms houses, following several complaints.
There are allegations that the licensed dealers sold arms illegally to customers, who used fake documents during transaction.
The arms house dealt in guns of bore 12 mm single barrel and double barrel with ammunitions, and has been allegedly running this business illegally for a long time.
Security personnel had earlier bbed people from whose possession firearms illegally purchased from this arms house were seized.