Goldsmiths flouting hallmarking norms to face strict actions soon

‘Within 1 month, they need to show compliance’

Irfan Tramboo

SRINAGAR, June 13: Authorities in Kashmir are mulling strict action against the goldsmiths if they fail to comply with the guidelines concerning the hallmarking of the gold items they sell.
Officials told Excelsior that the goldsmiths from Srinagar were recently called in for a meeting during which their issues and reservations were heard and they were directed to comply with the directives issued in this regard and ensure hallmarking of the gold items.
“We have been telling them time and again to adhere to the norms that have been issued, however, for the last more than 2 years, they have been evading it by putting forth lame excuses,” officials said.
They said that despite giving them the due time to adhere to the norms issued about the hallmarking, there has not been any compliance. “We have now asked them to ensure compliance within one-month failing which the necessary action will be taken.”
The goldsmiths have been directed to ensure processing of the existing old and ensure that the same is sold as per the new regulations with due hallmarking.
It is to be noted here that hallmarking has been made mandatory in over 250 districts of the country, including two J&K Districts, Srinagar and Jammu, while Srinagar, as per official figures, has over 300 goldsmiths operating in the district.
“We have been carrying out enforcement drives in this regard and have been asking them to follow the guidelines regarding the hallmarking; they need to sell only the hallmarked gold apart from following other norms; we have even, so far, fined several goldsmiths in Srinagar,” Mushtaq Ahmad Wani, Assistant Director, Enforcement FCS&CA told Excelsior.
He said that after the passage of due time which has been given to them for the adherence to the guidelines, “if there are any more violations, we will be forced to take a strict action which includes one-year imprisonment as well as Rs 50,000/- fine,” he said.
Further, the Legal Metrology Department has also carried out the necessary awareness as well as the training of the goldsmiths, even as the goldsmiths are currently carrying out the HUID registration for the hallmarking.
The officials said that they are also appealing to the general public to make sure that they get only the hallmarked gold and ensure that the necessary information is scribbled on the gold items which they buy.
“There have been several complaints received from the general public, regarding they being duped, charged more, given less for the gold which they sell and if the goldsmiths ensure hallmarking, it will address so many issues,” the officials said.