🇮🇳 India Post has moved from issuing new stamps in order to have a source of income from stamp collecting to the full scale exploitation of stamp collectors, particularly those who feel they must have 'one of everything'.
Witness this enormous deluge of new issues as India Post attempts to get out every stamp it possibly can before the end of the year. What a pity that in its new issue programming India Post has turned to the dark side and could soon be as infamous as Stamperija, IGPC or Australia Post for its monumental overissuing policies.
So, in these final days of 2017, we have:-
28 December - Commemoration of Dr. Shivajirao Ganesh Patwardhan (1892 - 1986) who devoted his working life to the care of people with leprosy. This single stamp issue clearly features a worthy subject for a stamp issue and I have no problems with this issue. Illustrated at the head of this piece. Rating:- ****.
29 December - Centenary of the death of Dadabhai Naoroji. Now this is definitely an interesting issue. Naoroji was a Parsi intellectual, educator, trader and an early Indian politician and social reformer. Here's a fact for those who like participating in quizzes - Naoroji was a Liberal Member of Parliament at Westminster from 1892 - 95 and was the first Asian to be a member of the House Of Commons. He was elected MP for Finsbury Central with a majority of just 5 votes.
After his return to India he played a role in the formation of the Indian National Congress and drew attention to the draining away of India's wealth to its imperial master, Great Britain. This is an important and very interesting stamp and a notable commemoration and there is no problem with this issue. Rating:- *****.
This would have been an excellent subject for a joint issue between India Post and Royal Mail.
Now we go downhill:-
29 December - Stepwells (stairwells) of India - 16 stamps issued in 4 x 4 sheetlets with the 4 different stamps in each sheet forming 4 se-tenant horizontal strips of 4 giving a total of 4 horizontal se-tenant strips to be collected. There is an additional sheetlet which contains all 16 stamps. Interesting but excessive. Rating:- **.
30 December - Joint issue with PNG Post (Papua New Guinea postal service), National birds. 2 stamps and 1 miniature sheet. It is expected that the PNG issue will appear on its own website in the very near future. Rating:- ***.
30 December- Hand fans of India - 16 stamps and 2 single stamp miniature sheets. Issued in 4 sheetlets each containing 4 x 4 stamps resulting in horizontally se-tenant strips each of 4 different stamps. In all there are 4 horizontal strips of 4 to collect as well as a sheetlet of 16 different stamps (one of each design) and 2 single stamp miniature sheets. Rating:- *.
31 December - Fiftieth anniversary of the death of Justice Mehr Chand Mahayana 1889 - 1967) - 1 stamp. This was the third Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of India. Rating:- ***. Design to be added.
The issue of 37 stamps and 3 miniature sheets in 4 days is pretty aggressive by anyone's standards and one fears that matters will only get worse still in 2018.