HISTORY OF HALLMARKING IN INDIA
The BIS hallmark is a hallmarking system for gold as well as silver jewellery sold in India certifying the purity of the metal. It certifies that the piece of jewellery conforms to a set of standards laid by the Bureau of Indian Standards, the national standards organization of India. India is the second biggest market for gold and its jewellery. India imports in excess of 1,100 tons annually with negligible local production. The annual gold imports are around 50 billion US$ next only to crude oil imports. The BIS system of hallmarking of gold jewellery began in April 2000. The standard specifications governing this system are IS 1417 (Grades of Gold and Gold Alloys, Jewellery/Artefacts), IS 1418 (Assaying of Gold in Gold Bullion, Gold alloys and Gold Jewellery/Artefacts), IS 2790 (Guidelines for Manufacture of 23,22,21,20,19,18,17,16,14 and 9 carat Gold Alloys), IS 3095 (Gold solders for use in manufacture of jewellery).
BIS hallmark for gold jewellery consists of two components:
- Purity of Gold 22K916 Corresponding to 22 Carat, 18K750 Corresponding to 18 Carat and 14K585 Corresponding to 14 Carat.
- Hallmarking Uniqe Identification (HUID)
BIS introduced hallmarking for silver jewellery in December 2005 under IS 2112, the standard specification for ‘Hallmarking of Silver Jewellery/Artefacts’.
Assaying & Hallmarking Centres
The testing of the jewellery as well as the marking is done in approved Assaying & Hallmarking Centres across the nation. These are private undertakings approved as well as monitored by the BIS. There is a demand for approximately 2000 or more centres to fully service the extent of all jewelers in India. Presently there are just 1220 such centres. Hence the need of the hour is to increase the number of such centres. Kharaa Sona plans to supply this industry demand by opening up more than 500 such State-of-Art Assaying and Hallmarking centres in the very near future .