About Us

The State Government’s philosophy is guided by pro-poor and people-centric democratic on the principles. This has translated into inclusive growth, with emphasis focused on rural segments of the population. Mission Poverty Free Sikkim was launched by the State Government in 2009 with the objective of becoming Poverty Free State by 2015. In Sikkim no one goes hungry to bed and every person has a roof over his head and shelter. However, what makes Sikkim Government unique is the ability to go beyond ensuring basic food security, shelter, literacy and health for all and truly raising the standards of living of all the people in Sikkim.

The Department of Food Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs is entrusted with two distinct functions, one dealing with Food and Public Distribution, i.e., providing food security to the people of the State and the other relating to Consumer Protection, i.e., protection and safeguarding the interests of consumers. The department thus functions through its two distinct divisions:

  1.  Food and Civil Supplies Division which implements various statutory provisions as contained in the Essential Commodities Act, 1955 and the rules thereunder regulating procurement and distribution of essential commodities namely rice, wheat, sugar and kerosene oil under Public Distribution System.
  2. Legal Metrology and Consumer Protection Division which deals with Consumer Rights and their grievance redressal and regulate the standards of weights and measures across the state.

Public Distribution System

The Department is entrusted with the work of managing the Public Distribution System which is operated under joint responsibility of the Central and State Government. The Central Government through the Food Corporation of India has the responsibility for procurement, storage, transportation and bulk allocation to the State. The operational responsibility including allocation and transportation within the state, identification of eligible beneficiaries, issue of Ration Cards, distribution of food grains through the Fair Price Shops (FPS) and supervision of the functioning of Fair Price Shops rests with the state which is implemented through the Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs Department.

The Public Distribution System (PDS) has been a major instrument for ensuring availability of essential food commodities at affordable prices to the citizens of the country. It has also become an important strategy for poverty eradication and has served as a ‘safety net’ for the poor as it guarantees adequate quantity of quality food grains at subsidized prices to people living below the poverty line.

The Department being the nodal department for implementing the schemes under the Targeted Public Distribution System is entrusted with the task of providing quality food grains and other essential commodities like Rice, Sugar, Wheat (Atta) and Kerosene Oil to the eligible ration card holders of the State at subsidized rates. The department is engaged in procuring, storing and distributing food grains at rates fixed by the government as well as monitoring and enforcing regulatory orders of the government under Public Distribution System. The Department is also entrusted with the responsibility of notifying the rates of petroleum products and ensuring its quality and availability in the open market.

Legal Metrology Unit

The Legal Metrology Act, 2009 (1 of 2010) came into force on 1st April 2011 thus revoking the Standards of Weights & Measures Act, 1976 & Standards of Weights & Measures (Enforcement) Act, 1985. In accordance with this, the Weights & Measures Cell in the state of Sikkim has been reconstructed as the ‘Legal Metrology Unit’ beginning 1st April 2011, under the mandate of the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Government of India. The unit also collaborates with the Consumer Protection Cell in the state.

The Government ensures through Legal Metrology Act, 2009 that standards of weights and measures across the state are established and enforced, regulate trade and commerce in weights, measures and other goods which are sold or distributed by weight, measure or number.

The office also regulates the sale of commodities in “Pre-Packed form”. The Legal Metrology (Packaged Commodities) Rules, 2011 require mandatory declaration of certain basic information namely name of Manufacturer/Importer/Packer, common or generic name of the commodity, net quantity, month & year in which the commodity is manufactured/pre-packed/imported, retail sale price of the package and consumer care details on the packages to safeguard the interest of consumers. The Rules also require importers to provide these basic declarations on imported packages, similar to those for indigenous packages.

The Legal Metrology Unit under the Food, Civil Supplies & Consumer Affairs Department is responsible for enforcing the following Acts and Rules in Sikkim:-

    1. The Legal Metrology Act, 2009(1 of 2010).
    2. The Legal Metrology General Rules, 2011.
    3. The State Legal Metrology Enforcement Rules, 2011.
    4. The Legal Metrology (Packaged Commodities) Rules, 2011.
    5. The Bureau of Indian Standard Act and Rules framed there under according to the Directives of the Bureau.
    6. The various Control Orders issued under the Essential Commodities Act, 1955.

This unit has mini laboratory where machineries and equipment have been installed. These equipment are utilized for authentication of accuracy of weights & measures, weighing and measuring instruments as per the standard prescribed under the Legal Metrology Act, 2009 (1 of 2010).

The scope of Legal Metrology has expanded due to rapid development in science and technology. Moreover, in view of globalization of economics and vertical growth of high tech industrialization, there has been vast advancement in weighing and measuring techniques. To meet these standards, the Government of India has released a sum of Rs.1.95 crore for construction of Laboratories.

Consumer Protection Cell

The Consumer Protection Cell under the Food, Civil Supplies & Consumer Affairs Department is charged with the responsibility of effective implementation of Consumer Protection Act, 1986 & its subsequent amendment acts and the Sikkim Consumer Protection Rules, 1990. The essential mandate of the department is consumer advocacy.       

The activities of this Cell are promotional in nature. Dissemination of information about various salient features of the Consumer Protection Act to the consumers, establishment and functioning of Consumer Disputes Redressal Agencies, organizing Consumer Awareness Programmes, in-co-ordination with various Voluntary Consumer Organizations, infrastructural development of the Consumer Courts, promotion of more Voluntary Consumer Organizations to intensify the consumer movement in the State are some of its important functions.

Unlike other laws which are punitive or preventive in nature, the Act intends to provide simple, speedy and inexpensive redressal to the consumer’s grievances. For this purpose, the Act envisages three-tier quasi-judicial machinery at the National, State and District levels.