A recent announcement from the Union Ministry of Commerce and Industry had notified the Toys (Quality Control) Order, 2020 made Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) certification a compulsory for toy makers. A three month time was given to the toy makers in Channapatna and Kinnal and other traditional toy makers in the country to register themselves for Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) certification. This means their toys should carry BIS mark. The artisans are not aware of this new rule and who knows it says it an expensive for such kind of business.
According to the notification, The use of BIS Standard Mark as per the BIS (Conformity Assessment) Regulations, 2018 is compulsory. The process involved is the manufacturer needs a separate license for each toy he produces, and the licence will be issued only after testing. While the deadline given earlier was September 1, 2020, the Union government extended it by four months. The GI registered channapatna toy cottage industry, is poor, many artisans were ignorant of the new rule and expressed the inability to undergo the certification process because of the high costs involved. The artisans at Kinnal village in Koppal also involved in traditional toy making that are protected under GI. Our toy making industry is a small-scale industry. We are already in debt because of the lockdown and slowdown in the market. Where will we get the money for certification? asked an artisan from chennapatna.
The number of artisans which was upwards of 20,000 is now less than 1,000 just over two decades. Another old artisan has said, “If certification becomes mandatory, most may move out of the craft. We have not reported good business for nearly a year". Chennapatna Assembly constituency representative former Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy tweeted the new rule will hit the traditional toy-making industry badly. Though Prime Minister Narendra Modi had appreciated the Channapatna toys in his Mann Ki Baat, indicating the uniqueness. The government has to rethink about the decision as it is a small-scale cottage industry and it is the duty of the government to preserve the heritage.