The estimated total number of guns (both licit and illicit) held by civilians in France is 19,000,000. In a comparison of the number of privately owned guns in 178 countries, France ranks at No. 6.

The estimated total number of guns (both licit and illicit) held by civilians in Pakistan is 20,000,000. Pakistan has an edge over France when it comes to the number of privately owned guns and is ranked at No. 5.

Of the 19 million guns held by private citizens in France, only 7.5 million are legally registered. Of the 20 million guns held by private citizens in Pakistan, only 8 million are licensed. However majority of these licenses are fake, fraudulent, without any background checks and issued as political bribes, often for the purpose of establishing private armies.

In France you can get 7 years jail for keeping an unlicensed weapon. In most of Pakistan you can also get 7 years jail, except for Sindh, where you can go behind bars for up to 14 years.

France ‘claims’ it has very strict gun control laws, so does Pakistan. Clearly like Pakistan, France too has fallen victim to a ‘National Action Plan’. It may be best for both countries to ban the barbaric killing machines for good.

NAEEM SADIQ,

Lahore, November 14.