Have you ever imagined that the weight of the signature that you put on any paper, file, document or bank cheque can also be measured? Yes, it is possible.
In India, the Indian Institute of Legal Metrology (IILM), located in Kanke, Ranchi, has the technology to weigh anyone's signature. On the basis of this technology, the institute can identify whether a person's signature is real or fake.
IILM experts say that with the help of 'micro balance' technology-based equipment, the exact weight of objects of even the smallest mass can be detected. With its help, not only the signature, the smallest hair on our body, even the breath we exhale can be analyzed with 100 per cent accurate and standardized measurements.
The microbalance equipment is highly sensitive. Bad weather or even a speck of dust can affect its accuracy.
The weight of the signature is measured in micrograms. A microgram is one-thousandth of a milligram.
A former director of the institute says, interestingly, the weight of a forged signature is more than that of a genuine signature. The reason behind this is that any person signs in his natural style, whereas a person trying to copy it exactly is forced to put more pressure on the pen.
IILM is the only apex institute of its kind in the entire South and Southeast Asia providing training in setting legal parameters of weights and measures and its standard techniques.
The reputation of its high standards is such that till now thousands of officers from 32 countries have received training from this institute.
The institute is directly controlled by the Department of Consumer Affairs under the Union Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution.
According to the information provided on the IILM website, even prior to the introduction of the Metric system in India, the desirability of establishing a training centre for weights and measures was considered essential and eventually, several state governments particularly Maharashtra and Bihar came forward for giving training to their enforcement officials not only for maintaining the uniformity of their standards but also put forth a step ahead for safeguarding the interest of the consumers.
"In 1962, the Government of Bihar established a separate scheme under the name 'All India Training Institute of Weights and Measures' as a centrally sponsored scheme at Patna which was taken over by the Government of India in 1970 with all assets and liabilities for proper development... the Institute was put initially under German Government collaboration and on recommendation of the German experts; the institute was shifted to Ranchi in 1974 with a new name the 'Indian Institute of Legal Metrology'," reads the history section on the IILM website.
Presently, 32 courses are offered in the institute spread over approximately 70,000 square meters. This is the only institute in India providing training in Legal Metrology.
Regular training is conducted in the institute for legal metrology officers of the Union and state governments. The institute is also famous for its green campus with 18 laboratories and a rich library as well as seminar halls and all other necessary resources.
IILM's Head of Office, Banshi Dhar Konar says: "The institute has a proud history. This institute produces competent, knowledgeable and skilled human resources in the field of legal metrology."