Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah on Friday lifted a ban on the issuance of arms licences in the province.
"With the approval of competent authority (i.e. chief minister Sindh), the ban imposed on issuance of arms licences in Sindh province is hereby lifted with immediate effect and until further orders," a notification issued by Sindh home secretary Dr Muhammad Usman Chachar said.
According to the order, the monthly quota of the approving authorities as prescribed under Rule-4.1 of the Sindh Arms Rules, 2018, has also been restored.
It has been stated in the notification that only computerised arms licenses of non-prohibited bore will be issued as per the prescribed monthly quota and they will be subject to the fulfillment of all requirements as laid down in the Sindh Arms Act, 2013, and the Sindh Arms Rules, 2018.
The prohibited bore arms include AK-47, machine guns, sub-machine guns, etc. — automatic weapons that can release many bullets with one press of the trigger. Non-prohibited bore arms are shot-guns, revolvers, pistols, etc.
The ban on the issuance of arms licences was imposed in Sindh by the chief minister on the advice of the provincial apex committee after the launch of the Karachi operation against criminal elements in 2013, said Rasheed Channa, the chief minister's spokesperson.
He added that the restriction was imposed to control targeted killings and other such crimes in the province.