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10% of arms licence seekers fail dope test in Mohali

The Punjab government has made the dope test mandatory for applicants seeking a fresh or renewal of arms licence.

punjab Updated: Jun 22, 2018 10:55 IST
Saurabh Chauhan
Saurabh Chauhan
Hindustan Times, Mohali
Mohali,Punjab government,arms licence
(Representative image)

As many as 10% of the applicants looking for arms licences have tested positive for banned substances in Mohali district, since clearing dope test was made mandatory in April.

However, as many of them have claimed that they were taking certain medications that may have affected their result, the district administration plans to take up the matter with the Punjab home department for more clarification.

Since April end, over 400 people appeared for dope test to renew their arms licence. Of these 40 failed the test. Of the 230 people who appeared for the test in May, 23 didn’t clear it.

The Mohali civil hospital will soon submit a report to the deputy commissioner’s office.

The Punjab government has made the dope test mandatory for applicants seeking a fresh or renewal of arms licence.

As per the state government order, test is being conducted to check whether the applicant is a drug addict. The applicant is tested for 10 drugs, that include many salts being used in medicines prescribed by physicians.

Authorities involved in dope test process at Mohali civil hospital said it was noticed in some cases that the applicant tried to dilute the urine sample with water in anticipation of testing positive for banned substances. An official said, “Majority of those failed were tested positive for sedatives.”

The deputy commissioner’s office, that issues new licence and renewals, has received two cases where applicants have contested their positive results. The applicants explained that they were under certain medication, prescribed by doctors.

The DC office has asked them to come up with medical records, as such kind of complication was never explained by the government, while making the dope test mandatory for renewing arms licence.

Vijay Bhagat, senior medical officer (SMO), Mohali civil hospital, said, “We are very strict about the dope test. We send a technician along with applicant while taking a urine sample for the test, and the report is sent to the deputy commissioner’s office in a sealed cover.”

On applicants contesting discovery of prescribed salts in their urine samples, Bhagat said, “There are clear directions. Conduct a dope test and submit the report to the deputy commissioner’s office. All other decisions are up to the deputy commissioner’s office.”

Mohali deputy commissioner Gurpreet Kaur Sapra said, “I have come across some cases where applicants failed the dope test, but claimed that they were under some medication. I am waiting for more such cases then I will write to the home department of Punjab for clarification on what to do in such cases, whether to send them back for dope test immediately or if there is another way,” she added.

First Published: Jun 22, 2018 10:22 IST