Mangaluru, Aug 17, 2016: Briefing media on Aug 16, Tuesday, Minister for Food and Civil Supplies U T Khader said the Legal Metrology Department is considering a proposal to install government weighing scales outside malls and supermarkets to check misuse of anomalies related to weights and measures and MRP maximum retail price on food labels.
He said the customers can weigh the food grains and other items outside the malls and supermarkets and verify the correctness of the quantity declared on the labels. Any anomalies detected can be reported on the spot to the officials. The government weighing scales will also be installed outside the APMC yard for the benefit of the poor farmers.
The department’s senior officials have already spoken to the hypermarket and supermarket personnel in this regard. The department checks and certifies weights and measures at shops and other business establishments.
"With the entry of China-made weights and measures, the role of Legal Metrology in certifying them is limited. Hence, we are proposing it to make the importing agency responsible if there is any anomaly in the weights and measures imported," Khader said.
He said there are no government testing centres to check the quality of gold ornaments purchased by the customers. He said the government is contemplating to set up a quality testing centre for gold on a pilot-basis in Bengaluru. The quality testing machine costs Rs 80 lakh, he added.
Ration cards : The state Cabinet has decided to consider four categories as non-BPL while issuing ration cards. The government is planning to change the nomenclature of BPL and APL to Aadyatha Kutumba (priority family) and Aadyatha Rahitha Kutumba (non priority family) respectively, he said.
Non-BPL category would be those who are government employees or employed in government-aided companies/institutions; those who are income tax assesses; those who own at least 7 acre of irrigated land; those who own a house with a dimension 1,000 sqft in city corporation limits or 1,400-sq ft house in other towns; those who own a four-wheeler and those who consume more than 150 units of electricity a month. However, those who own a four-wheeler commercial vehicle (a taxi) for their livelihood would be exempted and considered for BPL tag. The minister said the model of ration card would be changed to look like smart cards with a bar code.
He said the ration card holders have been finding it difficult to get Aadhaar card-linked biometric coupon system from designated franchises to get foodgrains delivered to them. Once the Aadhaar card is seeded with the ration card, the coupons would be distributed once in four or six months. A meeting of e-governance and National Informatics Centre (NIC) and the Department of IT and BT was convened to upgrade the server to help in the generation of coupons, he explained. Minister Khader said the issuance of ration cards for applicants will be brought under Sakala scheme.
Taxi aggregators : Minister Khader also indicated the metres of autorickshaws and taxis are certified by the department. However, the taxi aggregators do not come under its purview. A policy would be formulated by the government to bring them under the department’s purview, he added.