is not unusual to get a common person confused in three different
branches of science, having close resemblance in their names i.e.
Metallurgy, Meteorology, Metrology. The first two branches of science
deal with properties of metals and study of motions and phenomena of
atmosphere respectively, whereas Metrology is the field of knowledge
concerned with the measurement. It includes both theoretical and
practical aspects with reference to measurements, whatever their level
of accuracy and in whatever fields of science or technology they may
system of measurement is a must for science, engineering, trade and
every day life. Science and engineering need a more comprehensive system
of measurement than trade but trade has been a driving force in the
development of measurement techniques. Traders in old times spread a
knowledge of measurements and mathematics as per requirement of trade.
They encouraged the development of those fields which require precision
measurement so that they could spread trade without risks of
un‑acceptability. These days Metrology is a valuable tool in the
constant struggle of manufacturing industry to improve competitiveness.
It helps in the economic control of manufacturing processes and in
convincing the customers that the product meets the specification and
standards as he requires through demonstration.
the year 1947 when Pakistan came into being as an independent state
there was a tremendous diversity of Weights and Measures in the country
for example copper and aluminum were measured and sold in tons and
pounds whereas the finished copper utensils were sold in seers and
aluminum utensils in tolas. Butter oil was sold in seers but butter
itself was sold in pounds weights. Air freight was being collected in KG
and seaborne freight in tons whereas the Railway freight in terms of
seer, maunds, etc. A situation like this and the coexistence of the
diverse systems of weights & measures in Pakistan was creating chaos
and confusion on the one hand and on the other creating hindrance to the
trade of the country. By 1960 majority of the countries of the world
adopted the Metric system of weights and measures.
Government of Pakistan also decided to introduce the Metric System of
Weights & Measures in the country and entrusted Pakistan Standards
Institution (PSI) the responsibility to prepare a comprehensive report
on the subject for its consideration. The report was submitted to the
Ministry of Industries by the then Director, PSI in 1962. Ultimately an
act known as the Weights and Measures (Metric System) Act 1967 was
enacted through the National Assembly, which was amended in 1974 as
Pakistan Weights and Measures (International System) Act, 1967.
division of Ministry of Industries was made responsible for the
enforcement, calibration, training and publicity in connection of
Weights & Measures System in accordance to the Act of 1967. PSI was
simultaneously made responsible for laying down National Standards of
Weights and Measures.
the national trend, Government of Pakistan made the rules exercising the
powers conferred by the said act as Pakistan Weights and Measures
(International System) Rules 1974. A separate department of Weights and
Measures was established in the same year under the administrative
control of Ministry of Industries. The entire responsibilities of
Weights and Measures were assigned to that department.
in the managing of such responsibilities was started in 1976 when the
enforcement of the said Act at commercial level (the verification,
stamping of weights and measures and their instruments) was handed over
to the respective Provincial Governments. The Provincial Governments
consequently enacted their Acts and Rules, for the statutory enforcement
of the weights and measures, as under:
Weights & Measures (International System) Enforcement Act, 1975.
Punjab Weights & Measures
(International System) Enforcement Rules 1976.
Sindh Standard Weights & Measures Enforcement Act, 1975 (Sindh
Act XX of 1975).
Standard Weights & Measures Enforcement Rules, 1976.
North‑west Frontier Province Standard Weights &
Measures Enforcement Act, 1976 (N.W.F.P. Act III of 1976)
Frontier Province Standard Weights & Measures Rules, 1976.
Balochistan Weights & Measures (International System)
Enforcement Ordinance, 1977.
Weights & Measures (International System) Enforcement Rules, 1977.
Provincial Governments, by the authority of above Acts and Rules, are
responsible for carrying out following functions:
Enforcement of the new system.
To register and issue licences to manufacturers/repairers and
Maintenance of working standards.
Verification and re‑verification of Commercial Weights
Survey of Industries.
Inspections and prosecutions.
Department of Weights & Measures was abolished w.e.f. 30th June 1980
and the functions of that department were distributed to Pakistan
Standards Institution (PSI), Karachi and National Physical and Standard
Laboratory (NPSL), Islamabad.
functions allocated to PSI, were:
Coordination with International Bureau of Weights and Measures (BIPM)
and International Organization of Legal Metrology (OIML).
Establishment of Standards.
Advice on adoption of new units to switching over organizations.
Training of field staff of Provincial Government and other
switching over organization.
Coordination with Provincial Government regarding implementation
of the system in various organizations.
NPSL was allocated the following functions:
Maintenance of the reference and secondary standards.
Annual verification/Inspection of working standards of the
Inspectors of Provincial Government.
functions of PSI, on its being abolished, were, however, transferred to
the Pakistan Standards & Quality Control Authority on the enactment
of Pakistan Standards and Quality Control Authority Act (Act‑VI)
standards for weight and length have been enforced and are being used
all over Pakistan as per Pakistan Weights and Measures (International
System) Act, 1967. However, it is interesting to note that all the
premier government organizations dealing in distribution and development
of lands e.g. Central Board of Revenue (C.B.R.), Capital Development
Authority (C.D.A.), Lahore Development Authority (L.D.A.), Karachi
Development Authority (K.D.A.), Peshawar Development Authority (P.D.A.),
Cantonment Boards, etc., even a lapse of more than 35 years, have not
yet complied with the respective Acts and Rules and are still using the
outlawed units/standards, i.e. acre, kanal, marla, square yards etc.