As mass shooting incidents in the United States rise, India has tightened its firearms regulations, making it even more difficult for common citizens to own a gun.
India already had some of the strictest gun laws in the world, a vestige of British colonial rule, which aimed to disarm its subjects. Indian law allows citizens to own and carry guns, but it is not a right enshrined in the constitution. Getting a gun license in India is a difficult task that can take years.
Now, in the most ambitious restructuring of arms rules in more than five decades, the government has made the laws even tougher. Prospective gun owners will have to show they have been trained, and they must carry their firearms only in holders and secure them in a “knocked down” condition in gun lockers at home. The government will declare new gun-free zones, in addition to schools, across the country. Even air guns will require an arms license.
The new gun restrictions are not a reaction to recent violence. The process has taken five years, but it quickened after Prime Minister Narendra Modi was elected in 2014. The rules were put into effect last month and will be presented in Parliament.