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What you need to know while buying gold jewellery as India’s hallmarking scheme takes off

What you need to know while buying gold jewellery as India’s hallmarking scheme takes off

India’s gold hallmarking scheme, which enables consumers to see upfront the purity of the gold jewellery they are buying, is turning out to be a grand success, the Director General of the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) said on Saturday. 

He said that more than 1 crore pieces of jewellery had been hallmarked in the last 50 days between July 1 to August 20.  A hallmark is a purity certification of the gold so that consumers buying the jewellery are not cheated.

Another 91,603 jewellers were also registered for the hallmarking scheme during this period.

The BIS director general said that hallmarking was proceeding at an accelerating pace and while during the fortnight 1st July to 15th July 14.28 lakh pieces were hallmarked, this number jumped to 41.81 lakh during 1st August to 15th August.  He said close to 4 lakh pieces were hallmarked in a single day on August 20. 

He said that there should not be any problem in hallmarking 10 crore pieces of jewellery in a year, which is the estimated number of jewellery pieces to be hallmarked if the hallmarking became mandatory across the country.

What you need to know while buying gold jewellery 

*Jewellery of 20, 23 and 24 carats of gold jewellery allowed for hallmarking.

*Indian standard amended to allow hallmarking of small mixed lots of same purity.

*The BIS (Bureau of Indian Standards) mark is denoted by a triangle, the caratage (22K915) showing the purity, the mark of the jeweller and that of the Assaying and Hallmarking Centre (AHC) are visible on the hallmark.  

*You can ask the jeweller to show his BIS licence. As per BIS guidelines, jewellers are required to display the licence upfront. Check if the address mentioned on the slip and the store are the same.

*Ask for a breakup of the bill. You can also ask the jeweller to mention the hallmarking charges on the bill. The assaying and hallmarking centres (AHC) charge ₹35 per item hallmarked that is paid by the jeweller.

*You can get the jewellery checked at the AHC on your own by paying a small fee. You can check the list of AHCs on the BIS website. 

*After testing, the AHC will issue a report giving proper identifications as marked on the jewellery. If the jewellery is found to be of lesser purity, then the AHC, which did the initial certification, will have to refund the consumer’s fees.

*You can also approach your jeweller with the report as the seller is responsible for the purity of the product. The jeweller is also liable to compensate in such cases.

Hallmarking has been made mandatory in 256 districts of the country since June 16 and the scheme will be extended nationwide in a phased manner as more Assaying and Hallmarking Centres are set up.