The Patiala police have busted a fake arms licence racket operating from Amritsar, in which dealers in league with district administration officials were offering a number of weapons and fake licences to customers from New Delhi, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh.
The role of officials posted in the Arms Licence Branch in Amritsar has come under scrutiny after 37 licences were found to be made in Amritsar by showing Haryana, UP natives as Amritsar residents.
Gaurav Arora, owner of Arora Gun House, Amritsar, has been identified as the kingpin of the racket, allegedly in operation since 1997.
SSP Gurpreet Singh Gill said that the police received a tip-off that a fake arms license racket was also operating in Amritsar.
SP Bhupinder Singh Khatra gathered information and a team of Rajpura police nabbed, Parveen Kaur and Prem Mohan, both residents of New Delhi, who had procured fake licences, along with weapons purchased from Arora Gun House.
"The modus operandi was simple. Arora used to charge Rs 50,000 for a licence, which he managed to get made on forged documents, by bribing officials in the Amritsar DC office. Under the package, the customer also had to buy a gun and a pistol from Arora Gun House. The licence was later transferred to the original states of the customers," the SP said.
So far, four guns, 13 pistols and revolvers have been seized in connection with the racket.
The SP added that the police would seek remand of Arora and will seize the record of fake licences from Amritsar.
"We are probing that why did residents of UP and Haryana opt for a licence issued from Amritsar. We fear that criminal elements may have got valid licences on the basis of forged documents."
The SSP said that the police would write to the neighboring states to identify residents in possession of these bogus licences.
A case under sections 419 (cheating through impersonation), 420 (cheating and dishonesty), 467 (forgery), 468 and 120-B (criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code had been registered at the Shambu police station.