By Our Correspondent
BHUBANESWAR: Big jewellers shop owners in Odisha are in hurry. With raids continuing, panic has gripped among tainted gold and diamond merchants in Bhubaneswar, Cuttack, Berhampur, Sambalpur, Balasore and many other places of the State. Consumer Welfare Minister Ranendra Pratap Swain said notices will be issued to these shops soon. Big players like Kalyan Jewellers, Lalchand, Khimji, Epari, Tanishq, Reliance Jewels, Syndicates, SENCO and few others are looting customers, sources said.
So far, a fine of Rs 3.77 lakh has been collected after raid on 45 jewellery shops in six cities of the State. During the search carried out, officials of the Consumer Welfare department found that jewellery shops were charging for 22 carat gold while providing 14 carat gold. This apart, these shops are cheating customers while weighing the jewellery.
In Bhubaneswar, raids were conducted at 10 jewellery shops. It was found that eight shops in Odisha Capital are tampering with weight of gold jewellery. A total of 1.27 lakh have been collected from the shop owners who are cheating customers.
While six jewellery shops in Berhampur were involved in weight tampering, five shops in Cuttack were found to cheat consumers. Four shops in Balasore, two in Rourkela and five in Sambalpur were also found duping consumers.
The Companies are selling false Hallmark print, low quality product and false publicity using advertisements to fool the people of Odisha. Most of the Hallmark items should be probed by Indian Bureau of Standards. Company’s weight machine check should probed by weight and measures officials, sources said.
“The Legal Metrology Department officials should examine monthly deposit schemes whether they comply with the Prize Money Chits Banning Act. The Department should also examine whether the schemes were governed by the Banning of Unregulated Deposit Scheme (BUDS) Ordinance of the Central Government,” an activists in Bhubaneswar said.
In the recently concluded Odisha State Assembly’s Winter Session, Civil Supplies and Consumer Welfare Minister Ranendra Pratap Swain had informed that raids were conducted on 11 jewellery shops in the State in 2018-19 for allegedly cheating customers. In 2017-18, the department had raided 31 shops and collected fines for cheating in weight and measures.
The Minister said six shops were raided in Balasore whereas the officials conducted searches at four and seven shops in Khurda and Cuttack respectively. The Minister Swain had also accepted that the jewellery shops across Odisha are cheating customers in weights and measures. Especially jewellers in Bhubaneswar Cuttack, Berhampur and Balasore are duping buyers the most.
“Assembly Speaker Surjya Narayan Patro directed the government to conduct raids on jewellery shops in Bhubaneswar . As a result of which, raids are going on,” said sources.