Very senior philatelist D.Mahapatra was present in the meeting of PD account holders with India Post officials held in New Delhi last week.Mr Mahapatra sent this letter to Mr Adnan Ahmed, Director Postal Services (India Post), Delhi Circle.In this letter very important issues have been raised by Mr. Mahaptra which needs a healthy debate.It looks that Mr.Ahmed is very serious about problems of philatelists and philatelists should come forward with more suggetions .
Dear Sir / Dear Mr. Adnan, 11th September 2011
I sincerely appreciate the time you have spent with us yesterday to promote the interest of Philatelists. In the far end of the tunnel, I saw a flicker of hope for Delhi Philatelists as in my untrained eyes I could detect some sincerity in your interaction.(Note! You may find some typos and grammatical error in this mail, as at the moment I am unable to spend long time in editing ad redrafting kindly ignore those and if anything is not clear I will be more than glad to clarify)I have promised to give you a detailed feedback, as yesterday I was a little unprepared and my own feelings came up without provocation, though I admit in rather haphazard and incoherent manner.Here goes the feedback and I hope you shall find some time to read it, as it is going to be quite lengthy one.In case you go thru’ the three links provided and the attachments then you shall surely appreciate that Philately is now nothing but a medium of investment (please see Link 3, copy paste in your browser and attachment have to be opened).And you have shown interest to increase the number of philatelist to 1000 by 2012! If that is your intention from heart, then I believe determined steps and a shaking down of present system is must.
I have certain questions for which I shall appreciate if I have an answer, some feedback and suggestions for which I shall be glad to know the possibility of implementation.
1. When someone opens a PDAC after what time the account gets activated. As an example if someone opens an account on 09.09.2011 from when he will start getting his order delivered & from which dates issue the packet will include?
2. Why cannot year packs be booked in advance anymore via PDAC standing order? Why is the release date of year packs not announced via any media? What is the cutoff date of year pack release?
3. Is there an option to have only miniatures as a year pack.
4. Why are all the options mentioned in PDAC form not available like Corners, Block of 4, Childrens pack?
5. Why is there no public announcement (either via your website, or via print media) on any release about types of issues and quantity being brought out? – like if there is a miniature issue, Ornamental sheet issue and quantity of respective category.
6. What happens in case a PDAC holder does not get an issue? As discussed they will not even know that something is missing in the packet as the interval of delivery is 2 3 months. Just mere saying of helplessness or sold out is no answer as the very purpose of opening of the account is to get all issues as per order in door steps and I believe that, that is the objective of India post too.
7. Why are all the philatelic counters in the national capital so shabby in appearance and dealing with public? (List is endless)
8. What are the minimum education and philatelic exposure required for a person to be in the philatelic counter? (I might live in Utopia but I feel the person sitting in counter hould have certain passion and education for this job).
9. For Gandhi Khadi stamps I have paid Rs 1375 (Rs. 250 x 5 + Rs 25x 5 for delivery) by Pay order of Standard Chartered Bank # 070062 dated 06.01.11. I have received 5 packs by a single post (SP ED229669154 IN Amount Rs. 23). To whom shall I contact to get the balance Rs. 102/- back? I have all details with me.
10. In INDIPEX 2011, first day Gandhi miniature was sold without presentation pack @ Rs.100/- for approx 3 hours. I am witness to this and have seen many people were buying those in huge quantities and seemed to be pre informed people. By the time I realized the sale was stopped. Was this sale i.e. MS without presentation pack authorized? If yes, by whom and up to what quantity out of 100’000 printed (Presentation pack says 0.01 Million = 10’000) and limit of quantity to be sold per person? If it was not authorized then what were the steps taken? was there any departmental enquiry for this lapse, if any? I do not mind if India Post makes profit from any venture but I do mind if they lose money for lapses and certain individuals’ gains. Another point is Mahatma should not be made into a money making ploy as Theme of Mahatma is the biggest one in terms to complete or in terms of money spinner for scrupulous elements.
11. In case to sale loose MS was decided then why do we the PDAC holder not get it as regular supply? Please remember so long it was sold in pack it followed the announced policy as there was no announcement that it will be sold without year pack. Then why it is being offered over the counter in pack at a prohibitive cost of Rs 250.
Suggestions & Feedback
1. Please make the system transparent and people responsible for their duty and action.
2. Please take up the issue for improving information brochure it must contain (additionally to the meager information provided in it) No. of MS printed, No. of OS printed, Perforation, Paper used including detail and gram per sq. m, Gum type (like Water activated/ pressure sensitive), size of the stamp, Serial number as per India post catalogue and image of the stamp as bare minimum. This should also be uploaded under the link “stamp issued in yyyy.”
3. Spelling and grammatical mistake should carefully be checked.It is ultimately image of India, which matters most in foreign country.
4. As discussed comprehensive computerized list for all PDAC account holder and their requirement should be made such that sufficient demand can be made.
5. Old issues at certain premium in limited quantity with traceable (to avoid duplicate orders) record should be sold against positive ID proof. (No genuine philatelist will like to have more than a block of four or six.).
6. Earlier 90% issues were printed in format were the Traffic light used to come in corner block of 4. Now many are coming in Block of six – is it not a indirect pressure on a small philatelist to buy 6stamps instead of 4.
7. To stop hoarding of new issue for the first three months not more than 2 sheets / 10 miniatures should be sold person and that too against positive ID proof. Register for daily sales has to be kept in counter for the sake of transparency; it is very easy with simple excel (MS- Application) in the era of e -post.
8. It is true that in some post offices (mainly bureaus) certain influential people are allowed to scan the whole package or buy more than two packs of miniatures / sheets. Does not it indicate some nexus? Surprise visit (Remember the unannounced visit of Mr. Rafi A Kidwai to Kolkata, then Calcutta, GPO and action thereof) is must.
9. It is also true that packet goes out (see link # 1 please you have to copy paste in browser) and comes back in opened condition.
10. I am told in many post offices that treasurer start issuing only from 1300 hrs !!!!.
11. For the sake of Philately and long run profit of India post small philatelist and new comers should be helped by department.
12. Stamps should be handled with utmost care and stored properly. For you at India post it might be revenue generating a piece of paper and for us it is more than a piece of history. It is appalling to see how in many philately counters in Delhi itself (If you really love Philately please go for a surprise check) the beautiful stamps are being killed like so many insensitive dealers, who stores stamp in pathetic condition only to earn money out of it and calls themselves as harbinger of hope and tradition.
13. Dispatches to PDAC holder should be done in more professional manner (Like not writing the address with ball pen on the envelope after putting in the stamps) and in better packing (water proof plastic / glassine and bubble foam sealed envelope)
14. Some other suggestions you shall find in the links given.
Thank you very much for going thru the all documents and this long mail.
I am surely looking forward
– for a better tomorrow for philately if we all work together, and
– An answer from your goodself.
P.S.: I have marked this mail to many fellow senior philatelists who has attended the meeting with you for more inputs and valuable and valid suggestions
link – 1