BIS Certification in India in regulated by the Bureau of Indian Standards, empowered through an Act of the Indian Parliament, known as the Bureau of Indian Standards Act, 1986. BIS Certification is a means for providing third party guarantee of quality, safety and reliability of products to the customer. BIS Certification is voluntary in nature; however, the Government of India has made BIS certification mandatory for certain products taking into consideration public health. The certification allows the licensees to use the popular ISI Mark.
Schemes of BIS Certification in India
BIS product Certification Scheme is one of the largest in the world, with over 26500 licensees covering more than 900 products. As per Government notification, 90 products are mandatory required to have BIS certification. BIS also operates Foreign Manufacturers Certification Scheme under which overseas manufacturers can be granted licence to use the BIS Standard Mark. At present, over 350 licenses have been granted for over 50 Indian Standards in 40 different countries.
System of BIS Certification in India
The BIS product certification scheme is essentially voluntary in nature, and is largely based on ISO/IEC Guide 28 which provides general rules for third party certification system of determining conformity with product standards through initial testing and assessment of a factory quality management system and its acceptance followed by surveillance that takes into account the factory Quality management system and the testing of samples from the factory and the open market. All BIS certifications are carried out in accordance with Indian Standards, which are amenable to certification. A large number of operational elements of the BIS product certification scheme correspond with the requirements of ISO/IEC 17065.
Different Schemes for BIS Certification in India
BIS Certification is provided in India for products under different types of schemes as follows:
- Normal Procedure for Domestic Manufacturer – The applicant is required to submit the filled in application along with required documents and requisite fee to the nearest BIS branch office. Subsequently, after recording of the application, a preliminary factory evaluation is carried out by BIS officer to ascertain the capability of the applicant/manufacturer to produce goods according to the relevant Indian Standard and to verify the availability of complete testing facility and competent technical personnel. Samples are tested in the factory and also drawn for independent testing. Grant of licence is considered by BIS provided the samples pass during independent testing, preliminary evaluation is satisfactory and the applicant agrees to operate the defined Scheme of Testing & Inspection and pay the prescribed marking fee. By this procedure the licence is expected to be granted within 4 months of recording of application by BIS and 6 months in case of all India first licence for a product.
- Simplified Procedure for Domestic Manufacturer – The applicant is required to furnish the test report (s) of the sample (s) got tested by him in the BIS approved laboratories (link for BIS lab database and circular 89), along with the application. If the test report (s) and other documents are found satisfactory, a verification visit is carried out by BIS. The licence is granted thereafter if the verification report is found satisfactory. By this procedure the licence is expected to be granted within 30 days of recording of application by BIS, provided all required documents are furnished and found satisfactory.Simplified procedure is available for all products which are covered under voluntary certification only.
- Tatkal Scheme – Those manufacturers who need BIS standard mark mandatorily as per Government notification can obtain BIS license under the tatkal scheme. Under the tatkal scheme, the application is processed within strict timelines and the total time for processing is specified as 30 days. I addition, application received under the Tatkal Scheme will be processed on priority basis to adhere to the strict time norms.
- ECO Mark Scheme – BIS License for eco-friendly products are granted in a scheme separate from the normal BIS Certification process. Eco-friendly products should conform to additional requirements specified in the Indian Standards to qualify for the ECO mark. The procedure for grant of licence is however similar to that of Domestic Manufacturers scheme.
- Foreign Manufacturers Certification Scheme – Overseas applicants/foreign manufacturers are granted licence for the use of ISI mark under separately designed scheme within 6 months period.1.
Mandatory Products for BIS Certification in India
Certain products are mandatory to have BIS Certification in India considering the public health and safety. Without BIS Certification, these products cannot be manufactured or sold. The following are products that require mandatory BIS Certification in India:
- Household electrical goods
- Food and related products
- Diesel engines
- Oil pressure stoves
- Automobile accessories
- Cylinders, Valves and Regulators
- Medical Equipment
- Steel Products
- Electrical Transformers
The schemes of BIS certification in India operates through a network of 34 Branch Offices set up in State capitals or major industrial towns and 5 Regional Offices overseeing the work of the Branch offices.