Hallmarking is a way of preserving the buyers' interest. BIS Hallmark is a device that lets you assess the pureness of the country's gold and silver gems. It is a certification issued by India's national quality organization Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS). The BIS Hallmark Certificate certification granted by this body confirms that a piece of gold gem meets BIS requirements.
Hallmarking of gold is not a very old concept in India and began somewhere in April 2000. Before the introduction of the concept of Hallmarking, buyers didn’t have a sure-shot way of determining the purity of gold. A Hallmarked gold implies that the metal used in making the ornament is persistent with international and national quality standards. BIS hallmarking has laid the basis of quality and benchmark of trust for a large number of gold buyers in the country.
Gold is a precious metal because of its manifold uses. Gold happens to be an important part of every wise investors’ portfolio. Gold is not just a way to adorn the bodies in our country and in other parts of the world. It's also one of the finest means to invest your money. Parents have been giving gold ornaments to their daughters since ancient times during their wedding as a form of financial security.
As Gold is a high value and precious metal, hence, having a method to determine its quality and purity is very important. In the absence of quality parameters, a buyer or an investor is always at risk as they will have to accept the quality of the metal as per the claims of your jewellery. Gold is a precious metal.
Hallmarking by the Bureau of Indian Standards implies that gold is of a certain quality and fineness. BIS lays down a standard about the quality of the metal.
It is not possible to determine the purity of Gold just by touching or looking at it without proper evaluation. Two gold ornaments can have the same pattern and style but may vary greatly because of the difference in purity of gold. A certificate of Hallmark can resolve these issues and can provide all the information required and confirm the pureness of the gold.
Hallmark gives trust and confidence to the gold jewellery industry. Not just buyers, but also sellers.
No, only BIS certified jewellers can do so. That’s why it’s better to buy your gold items from reputed jewellers who offer hallmarked products.
BIS Hallmark for gold items comprises of five elements or components or marks. The existence of these marks on your gold shows that the metal meets the purity requirements set by the Bureau of Indian Standards. These marks are:
1. BIS Standard Mark: BIS Standard Mark is a triangular mark which indicates that a third party or independent assessor has performed proper evaluation of the ornament and confirmed the purity of the metal. Generally, it is verified by one of the laboratories verified by the BIS. BIS is the only agency approved by the government to hallmark gold ornaments.
However, it is to be taken note that Hallmarking is voluntary and not all jewellers offer hallmarked jewellery.
2. Purity Grade:
The purity of gold can be determined in two ways name Karats (denoted as KT) and Fineness Number. The purest form of gold is 24 KT but is too soft to be used in creating jewellery or ornament. Therefore, a certain minuscule quantity of other metals like zinc or silver is added to the gold in order to make durable jewellery or ornament. The carat value of the gold ornaments generally ranges from 22k to 14k and is measured in three digits. For example, a 22k gold ring has a purity grade of 916. It implies that purity is 916 parts of 1000 or 91.6%. similarly, any jewellery made of 18k and 14k gold has a purity grade of 750 and 585, respectively.
Fineness number is another way of denoting the purity of gold. It is measured in parts per thousand.
As per the BIS website hallmarking of gold shall be done for three levels of purity only, i.e., Karats. These are as follows:
Corresponding to 22 Karat
Corresponding to 18 Karat
Corresponding to 14 Karat
The fineness number and BIS mark on the piece of jewellery suggest that BIS is accredited to be the fine/pure standard that is embossed on the piece of jewellery as part of the mark.
3. Hallmarking Centre’s Mark:
This is the trademark of the marking centre or the third party evaluator licensed by the BIS. The label is stamped on every object in the centre and is tested for purity. This is done so that the object can be traced back to the centre if any inconsistencies occur later.
4. Year of Marking:
This indicates the year the object was labelled. The marking year is marked by a letter of code determined by BIS. For eg, the code letter "A" was for 2000, "B" for 2001, etc..
5. Jeweller’s Mark:
This is the mark of the jeweller or manufacturer of the piece. Each BIS accredited jeweller has a unique logo embossed on its ornaments.
All these markings are clearly marked on the jewellery. One should check for these marks to ensure the purity of a jewellery..
For gold jewellery hallmarked till 31 December 2016
If you bought gold before or on 31 December 2016, there is another part marked with gold. Before the revision of the regulations, the BIS hallmarking scheme had five components effective 1 January 2017.
The fifth element was the marking year. It was a code letter for the year of labelling of jewellery determined by BIS. For example, the letter 'A' for 2000 and the letter 'J' for 2008 were used.
Points to remember
• There are costs to be charged to mark up the jewellery. According to the BIS website, Rs 35 plus tax per gold item is charged. A total of Rs 200 plus tax is paid for a consignment.
• No hallmarking is performed immediately. It may take around five to six hours before the purity of gold is checked.
• If you have a concern about the hallmarked jewellery, you can contact BIS by email or by calling 011-23234223 at email@example.com.
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