While they are right, so far as the Arms Act exempts only blades up to 9 inches in length - however, it also exempts blades (irrespective of size) which are designed for domestic or agricultural use!Pune police conducts raids against illegal sellers of blades; 371 sickles seized, four held
Raids were conducted at Ganesh peth, Juna Bazaar and Swargate
Pune Updated: Sep 20, 2019 16:21 IST
Hindustan Times, Pune
Officials of the Pune police crime branch have seized at least 371 sickles in multiple raids conducted across the city and arrested four people under the Arms Act.
In order to restrict usage of blades in thefts, murders and cases of threatening, the Pune police crime branch conducted multiple raids across the city to nab illegal sellers of such items. Officials of the Pune police crime branch have seized at least 371 sickles in multiple raids conducted across the city and arrested four people under the Arms Act.
“The law prevents one from owning a blade longer than nine inches. Only special permit holders can keep it. The farmers can use it. But these people who are selling it are not maintaining any record of the sale. Even if they were to maintain a record, who is verifying it?” said Bachchan Singh, deputy commissioner of police, crime, Pune.
The raids were conducted by the anti-extortion cell (west) officials in three places on Wednesday and Thursday. The places include Ganesh peth and Juna Bazaar on Wednesday and Swargate on Thursday.
The four arrested men have been identified as Jaysingh Shamrao Pawar, Mahaveer Brijlal Gupta, Nitin Dnyaneshwar Naik, and Ashish Shantibhushan Naik, according to the police.
“We first arrested Jaysingh Shamrao Pawar, a blacksmith from Juna Bazaar, who had a previous case under Arms Act,” according to senior police inspector Rajendra Mohite of anti-extortion cell (west) of Pune police.
“He led us to various other suppliers of sickles. DCP (Bachchan Singh) had asked us to carry out a special drive against the suppliers of sickles. They were being used widely in all kinds of cases- robbery, murder, attempted murder, and even threatening,” said Mohite.
The seized sickles, most sold at Rs 200 each, were estimated to be worth Rs 83,930. Pawar was first found in possession of 11 illegal sickles at his shop named Maharana Pratap Steel Iron Forging and Hardware, while Gupta was found in possession of 31 illegal sickles at his shop, Raj Bucket. The Naik brothers were found with 229 illegal sickles at their shop, Naik Bee-Biyane (seeds). None of them had any records of sale, according to the police.
Similar action was initiated in January 2019, by DCP Suhas Bawache of Zone-1 against sellers of blades. Pawar, who was first one to be arrested by the crime branch, was booked in an Arms Act case at Faraskhana police station back then as well.
Four cases on the three seizures have been registered at respective police stations under Section 4(25) of Arms Act.
Meanwhile, 545 cases under Section 4(25) of the Arms Act were registered in Pune in the past three years. The police have also conducted at least ten arms seizures in the past two months.
Per Section 2 (1) (c) of the Arms Act 1959:-
Per Schedule I Category V of the Arms Rules 2016:-(c) “arms” means articles of any description designed or adapted as weapons for offence or defence, and includes firearms, sharp edged and other deadly weapons, and parts of, and machinery for manufacturing, arms, but does not include articles designed solely for domestic or agricultural uses such as a lathi or an ordinary walking stick and weapons incapable of being used otherwise than as toys or of being converted into serviceable weapons;
Unless the Central Government has suddenly notified sickles and other such agricultural implements as "Arms", this seems like a clear case of Police high handedness!Arms other than firearms: Sharp-edged and deadly weapons, namely: Swords (including swordsticks), daggers, bayonets, spears
(including; lances and javelins), battle-axes, knives (including Kirpans and Khukries) and other such weapons with blades longer than 9” or wider than 2” other than those designed for domestic, agricultural, scientific or industrial purposes, steel batton, “Zipo” and other such weapons called 'life preservers', machinery for making arms, other than category II, and any other arms which the Central Government may notify under Section 4 of the Act.