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Functions of Legal Metrology Department

Introduction

The Legal Metrology department plays an important role in the Indian market as it protects the interests of the consumer and provides the authority to the manufacturer, dealer, and importer of the commodity to deal in the Indian market. Legal Metrology for business also plays an important role. The Legal Metrology department places various roles and has numerous functions with the aim of preventing fraud and protecting the interests of the consumer. It does various activities by following all the rules and regulations of the act. In this article, we are going to discuss the act, rules, aims, objectives, activities, and functions of the Legal Metrology department.

Governing Acts for Legal Metrology Department

The department is a statutory organization functioning under the governing act and rules, which are as follows:

  1. The Standards of Weights and Measures Act 1976
  2. The standards of Weight and Measure (General) Rules of 1987
  3. The Standards of Weights and Measures (Enforcement) Rule of 1987
  4. The Standards of weights and measures package commodities rules in 1977
  5. The Standards of Weights and Measures Enforcement Act 1985 

All the above-mentioned acts and rules have laid down the guidelines for the department and the general public, including consumers at large, to follow a standard pattern. The department is concerned with the implementation of the provisions of the central act and the various rules framed thereunder.

Central Act for Legal Metrology Department

  1. The central act is a parent act, and it is to establish the standards, regulations, and regulations for the commodities sold in package form.
  2. Internationally recognized units of measurement known as the international system of units have been adopted under the said system.
  3. The department monitors the implementation of these rules and acts to enforce them to safeguard the public interest.
  4. Implementation of the above central act and the other acts and rules is being done under the standards of weights and measures enforcement in 1985 at the level of the state.

The statutory functions of the Legal Metrology department

The statutory functions of legal metrology departments are given below:

  1. The primary statutory function of the department is to conduct the verification and inspection by legal metrology officer of weights and measures, weighing and measuring instruments at least once a year.

  2. Metrological control on packers, importers, and manufacturers of packaged commodities, including LMPC inspection of quantity and error in package and surprise visits to check the net content at manufacturing premises.

  3. Under the standard of weights and measures enforcement in 1985, maintenance of the secondary standards and working standards and their periodical verification is the statutory function of the department.

  4. Both the weighing and measuring scales are mechanical as well as electronic measuring instruments, such as:

      1. Dispensing pumps,

      2. Petrol pumps,

      3. Petroleum vehicle tanks, and

  5. Petroleum storage tanks for the check of weights and measures; factories, mining industries, and petroleum retail outlets such as dispensing pumps, petrol pumps, petroleum vehicle tanks, and

  6. Petroleum storage tanks for the check of weights and measures; weighing and measuring scales, both mechanical as well as electronic measuring instruments, such as:

      1. Dispensing pumps,

      2. Flowmeters,

      3. Taxi, and

      4. Auto rickshaw fare meters, all types of package commodities need to be checked by the legal metrology officer.

  7. The function of the legal metrology department is to conduct joint raids and weekly market inspection and launch prosecution against the offenders.

  8. Maintenance of secondary standards, working standards, and their periodical verification.

  9. Launching prosecution against offenders, compounding the offense, and filing cases in the court of law.

Control of Legal Metrology Department

The Legal Metrology Department has control over the manufacturer, dealer, or seller of weights and measures, and measuring instruments should be done by issuing a license to them.

Further, the Legal Metrology Department has control over the following: 

Trader

A trader is the user of weights and measures, weighing and measuring instruments who has registered or is interested in registering himself with the department.

Dealer

A dealer is a person who deals with weights and measures, weighing and measuring instruments, who have to apply to the department in the prescribed form department and is issued with the LMPC license by the department to deal with the weights and measurements, weighing and instruments under the act.

Weights and Measures

Every type of metric weight, measure, weighing, and measuring instrument through

  • The taxi, auto rickshaw meter,
  • Weighbridges,
  • Dispensing pumps, including petrol pumps, storage tanks, weaker tanks, etc.

Repairer

A repairer is a person who repairs weights and measures, weighing and measuring instruments and has to apply to the department in the prescribed form and is issued a LMPC license by the department to carry out the repair work of weights and measures, weighing and measuring instruments. 

Offender

  1. An offender is a person who contravenes the provisions of the abovementioned act and rules.
  2. He's the one who does not comply with the provisions of the act and conducts legal metrology fraud, which is against the interests of the consumer.
  3. The offender is liable to pay a heavy fine for the offense committed by him and will also be charged under the act.
  4. The license and end certificate of the offender can be seized by the legal metrology department, and heavy fines will be imposed on the offender if he is a habitual offender.

Printed declarations on the package of commodity

The pre-packaged commodities are not packed in the presence of the consumer. Therefore, according to the standards of weights and measures packaged commodity rules 1977, there is a need for consumers to be aware about LMPC declarations that every package should bear the following printed on it:

  1. the name and address of the manufacturer
  2. The name and address of the packer
  3. month and year of packaging or manufacturing
  4. The country of origin in the case of an imported commodity
  5. The generic or common name of the commodity contained in the package
  6. Any other additional information
  7. Maximum retail sale price including all the taxes
  8. The net quantity of the content is expressed in terms of weights and measures or numbers, as the case may be.

Suggestions for the Legal Metrology department

  1. To get the awareness of weights and measures law, the consumer must participate in the awareness program conducted by the legal metrology department and keep in touch with the workshops conducted by the legal metrology department.
  2. Not to neglect the provisions of the legal metrology department.
  3. Promptly report to the authorities concerned in the event of any instance of malpractice by way of short weight and measurement of commodities or by any other violation of departmental laws in force for taking legal action.
  4. In the event of any fault being noticed, the consumer needs to cooperate and report it to the enforcement officials of the respective area and jurisdiction so that the malpractices are brought to the books to enable this office to take action for such default by imposing fines on the default to be paid by the offender.
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