Increased Violence

The recent reports of police cracking down on 17 students from privileged private schools in Lahore over aerial firing highlight the need to address the growing problem of gun-related incidents in Pakistan. The video clip that surfaced on social media showed the boys blocking a busy main road, indicating a dangerous trend of using guns without proper licensing that has now given school children access to dangerous arms.

Unchecked gun use poses a significant threat to citizens, especially when it occurs in busy and populated areas. Prompt police action, including launching an FIR and arresting those involved, is a positive response to the situation. However, discouragement of gun use should also take place at home and in educational institutes, where there is often a lack of awareness of the dangers of gun-related incidents.

The issue of unchecked privilege is a common thread in various crimes, including underage driving and possession of illegal firearms. Criminals from privileged backgrounds are more likely to go free without reprimanding due to their social class and status. While it is commendable that the police took strict action against the offenders and seized their luxury assets, regular follow-ups are essential to prevent juvenile delinquents from growing up and becoming threats to society.

This is not an isolated incident, as the ringleader of the gang was arrested in Karachi. Prevention of juvenile delinquency is a crucial part of overall crime prevention, and it requires all segments of society to play an active role. Strict laws around firearm distribution and making gun access difficult should be a top priority. Already, there are no verification barriers to attain firearms and no limits or background checks for ammunition possession. Educational institutes and households must address the underlying causes of the issue and perform informal social control to curb this growing problem. Problems and signs of delinquency usually translate at the household level as well and should be caught at the earliest.

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