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HUID – Is it on the mark? Saiyam Mehra, President of GJC shares his opinion

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The Indian jewellery industry has accepted the HUID mandate. Our issue is not hallmarking; we did it with the four-digit number anyway. But there are two big problems today: first, the name of the karigar is visible to the end customer when they scan the jewellery piece on the BIS app. Second, the date of manufacturing is also visible on the app. Why is the date required for something like gold, which never perishes, and the value never depreciates?

ALTERNATE MARKING

The government follows the rules for perishable and electronic goods. That approach doesn’t work in the gem and jewellery industry. These issues must be resolved at the earliest; otherwise, the chain of the manufacturer, wholesaler, and retailer will break. The end consumer will always want to go to the manufacturer directly, and the manufacturer will not be ready to cater to their demands.

Instead, give the name of the hallmarking centre without the date of manufacture. Now, if the end customer is told that the product is new, and on the app, they see that it was made a few months ago, the confidence of the end consumer will reduce significantly.

“The government seems to be following the rules for perishable and electronic goods. That approach doesn’t work in the gem and jewellery industry”

Saiyam Mehra, President, GJC

HARSH PENALTY

BIS is going around checking, and people are stressed, but the majority have complied with the law. BIS should motivate more people to get HUID done, and if they have to be stricter, it should take a year or 18 months to implement the due process and penalties.

When you see some of the big cities, there are a lot of hallmarking centres because those places are manufacturing hubs. In the smaller towns, the larger retailers are getting prioritised; we’ve brought it up with the hallmarking centres.

ILLEGAL TRADE

Now, if we talk about smuggled gold, it is about 160 tonnes yearly, according to the World Gold Council. There is a disparity of Rs. 3 lakhs a kilogram. The government needs to reduce the customs duty by four per cent. Until then, not the jewellers but the anti-social elements will continue to smuggle, running a parallel economy in the country. This is making business difficult for those who are going by the book.

The Retail Jeweller

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