A special postage stamp on Mahatma Gandhi created from khadi turned out to be the most sought-after at the World Philatelic Exhibition (INDIPEX2011) that began here today.
The stamp, a collector\’s delight priced at Rs 250 for a premium limited edition in a miniature sheet format, was a coveted item for enthusiasts who queued up to buy it at the India Post counter at Pragati Maidan the venue of Indipex 2011, that was inaugurated by President Pratibha Patil.\”India has never issued any stamp on any material other than on paper. In other countries, materials like silk, gold and diamonds have been used to make stamps. We thought to experiment with khadi and Gandhiji was a natural choice since he advocated the use of handspun khadi,\” said Harpreet Singh, Director, Indipex.
\”We knew the stamp would generate a good response but this is overwhelming,\” he said when there was a brief stoppage around noon in the sale of stamps at the venue due to lack of stock. However, the sale resumed after fresh stock was brought half an hour later.
Umesh Karkari, a philatelist at the venue said, \”This is a very rare stamp and I was the first to obtain a copy. Gandhi theme is the most popular for stamp collectors and I am proud to own this khadi stamp.\”
The stamp made out of khadi is also being sold online at the Indipex 2011 website where an individual can order upto a maximum of 10 stamps.
There was a long queue even for the online bookings during the first day of the exhibition.
An India Post official said, \”We had printed one lakh special khadi stamps especially for Indipex 2011 and we think we might have to order some more units going by the huge demand.\”
One of the other events at the exhibition which drew crowds, especially children, was the \”My Stamp\” section. The initiative introduced by India Post for the first time offered visitors a chance to customise and personalise a stamp with their own photographs.
On Sunday, February 13, a set of stamps on six legendary actresses of Indian cinema, namely, Meena Kumari, Nutan, Kanan Devi, Devika Rani, Leela Naidu and Savitri will be released.
A total of 595 collectors from 70 countries are participating in the exhibition organised in collaboration with the Philatelic Congress of India under the auspices of the Federation Internationale de Philatelie and the Federation of Inter-Asian Philately.