The Madras High Court bench here on Friday ordered notice to the Director of Legal Metrology, Delhi, and the Controller of Legal Metrology, Chennai, on a public interest litigation filed by an advocate seeking to enforce the Legal Metrology Act, 2009 in Tamil Nadu.

The petitioner, M. Rajendran, in his petition alleged that the procedure adopted by the Public Works Department in the State contravened the Legal Metrology Act (LMA).

According to the petitioner, the provisions under the LMA mandated the weighing of sand and its sale based on the mass (kilogrammes or tonnes). But in Tamil Nadu, sand is measured and sold in ‘units’, he alleged.

“The Controller of Legal Metrology is supposed to enforce the LMA in Tamil Nadu. By allowing the officials to sell the sand in “unit” measurement form, they are encouraging white collar offenders and allowing illegal sand mining”, alleged P. Ganapathi Subramanian, the counsel who appeared on behalf of the petitioner. The counsel claimed that the PWD officials in the State were not even aware of the provisions of the LMA. “The records maintained by the PWD show that the procedure adopted by them (for sale of sand) contravenes the LMA.

The authorities have no right to sell the sand by adopting their own measure to fix the weight of the sand”, he contended. In his petition, Mr. Rajendran sought to initiate penal action against the government officials who measured and sold river sand by measuring the sand under the “unit” scale.

A division bench comprising Justices S. Rajeswaran and T. Mathivanan ordered notice to the officials and posted the case to September 3.

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