Personal weapons to army personnel under scrutiny, SC told

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Guns
New Delhi, Mar 11: The Defence Ministry today told the Supreme Court that it has decided to review the procedures for issuing non-service pattern(NSP) weapons to army personnel in view of findings that they were illegally sold to unscrupulous elements.

The ministry said that for the same reason it has also decided to review the procedures followed for permitting army officers to import arms and ammunition while posted in Bhutan.

A bench of justices B Sudershan Reddy and S S Nijjar, while taking on record the Centre's affidavit, posted the matter for further hearing after two weeks.

NSP weapons are issued to the army personnel for their personnel use from ordnance depots.

The Centre's affidavit comes in the backdrop of a PIL alleging largescale sale of official weapons by senior army personnel with the connivance of IAS and senior government officials in Rajasthan.

The Ministry said that on the report of the Court of Inquiry on Sep 25, 2008, the Commander South Western Command has initiated suitable disciplinary action against the erring army personnel after it came to light they were involved in the shady deals but were not dealt with adequately by their superior officers.

"The army headquarters has also been asked to review the procedures followed in the army for permitting army officers to import arms and ammunition while posted in Bhutan and for issue of NSP weapons from the ordnance depots to army officers for personal use.

PTI

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