hallmarking: Hallmarking centres across India to go on token strike next Tuesday
The government has said that hallmarking centres need to be located at the jewellery manufacturing centres only. This move will lead to closure of many hallmarking centres that are located outside the manufacturing hubs, the hallmarking trade said.
A token strike on Tuesday means that hallmarking activities will come to a halt ahead of the festive season when the gold jewellery demand goes up in the country.
Uday Shinde, president, Indian Association of Hallmarking Centres (IAHC) said that Mumbai and Kolkata are the two main jewellery manufacturing hubs in the country. There are 951 hallmarking centres in the country. “Of this, only 25 per cent are located at these manufacturing hubs,” Shinde said.
He explained that this will impact the customers too. “Suppose a jeweller from Kerala buys jewellery from the manufacturing hub of Mumbai. He then sells it to a customer who finds some purity issue in the jewellery item. Then redressal of the customer’s grievance will become a problem because the jeweller from Kerala will have to come down to the hallmarking centre in the manufacturing hub to address the issue.”
The hallmarking centres are also finding problem with the implementation of Hallmarking Unique Identification (HUID) number. “We cannot charge more for HUID. There is an added burden of machinery and human resource,” Shinde said.
Shinde alleged that they have come across cases where jewellers on their own are opening hallmarking centres. “Hallmarking is integral part of the gold value chain and hallmarking centres act as a third -party guarantor agency between jewellers and consumers. Government should not allow this to happen,” he said.
The IAHC president threatened that if the central government does not take any step then they will go in for an indefinite strike.