Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh were among five states that recorded the highest gun licences per lakh population with over 38,966 licences.
North-eastern states of Nagaland, Mizoram, Manipur, Tripura, Meghalaya and Arunachal Pradesh stood above the national average per lakh. The other states were Jammu and Kashmir which ranked the highest followed by Arunachal Pradesh and Punjab.
According to a report in The Indian Express, five states accounted for 26 per cent of the population. Citing 2011 Census, they had over 18 lakh gun licences.
And according to Ministry of Home Affairs data, given to Parliament earlier this week, almost 13 per cent or 4.57 lakh licences were issued in the last three years, it added.
Data also show that while the five states account for 26 per cent of the population – according to the 2011 Census – they had over 18 lakh gun licences.
Jammu and Kashmir, which ranks 18th in terms of population, recorded the highest gun licences per lakh population followed by Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland and Punjab.
“A comparison with the 2011 Census shows that the national average for gun licences per lakh population stood at 296 and 14 states including the north-eastern states of Nagaland, Mizoram, Manipur, Tripura, Meghalaya and Arunachal Pradesh stood above the national average,” the report also stated. While UP with a population of 19.98 crore had over 12.88 lakh gun licences, making it 644 licences per lakh population, J&K had the second-highest number of licensed weapons where 4.85 lakh licences were issued and the licences per lakh population was 3,859.
The state of Nagaland, which has a population of 19.78 lakh has over 38,966 licences.
In Madhya Pradesh, where the population is 7.26 crore, there were 2.58 lakh gun licences issued making it 356 licences per lakh population.
Incidentally, Maharashtra, which ranks second in population, had licences issued to 88,018 individuals or 78 gun licences per lakh population.
In India, a district magistrate can grant an arms license, which is valid across the country, to union ministers or MPs, security forces, officials of the All India Services, officers in the government or PSUs and for sports.