I recently acquired a DLO postcard. This particular post card was posted from Ahmednagar City on 12 Feb 1897, destination Bombay. I am not sure how DLO works because I see another Ahmednagar postmark that overlaps the DLO slip pasted on the postcard. Not sure if they actually sent the letter back to the destination city even as the return address was not known.
“A dead letter office (DLO) is a facility within a postal system where undeliverable mail is processed. Mail is considered to be undeliverable when the address is invalid so it cannot be delivered to addressee, and there is no return address so it cannot be returned to the sender.
At a DLO, mail is usually opened to try to find an address to forward to. If an address is found, the envelope is usually sealed using tape or postal seals, or enclosed in plastic bags and delivered. If the letter or parcel is still undeliverable, valuable items are then auctioned off while the correspondence is usually destroyed. Despite this practice, in the past some undeliverable envelopes were acquired by philatelists.
Dead letter offices go by different names in different countries. Other names include returned letter office or undeliverable mail office.”
Color variations in modern stamps are relatively common. Here’s a “teardrop”/”extra flag” error in one of the recent Indian stamps.
India Post issued a set of 2 stamps on February 17, 2018 in the denominations of Rs 5 and Rs 25 as India Iran Joint Issue. In Rs 5 stamp an extra flag in red is found on the smaller boat in the background. This variety occurs once in the sheet – Row 5 Column 4. Initially it was noticed on all sheets of this stamp. However later it was found that the sheets having color margin on top do not have this variety. Total of 501,000 stamps have been issued. I am guess there might be 2000-3000 stamps with this error out there based on the initial print run.
After a long wait for the post offices to upgrade their systems during which time sale of stamps from philatelic counters had dried up, I finally managed to get the M L Vasathakumari stamp from the Delhi philatelic bureau.
I seem to have laid my hands on what seems to be a printing plate flaw on the lot. The error occurs on the third column stamp. I am not sure what row this is in since the lot of stamps shown in pics here is all that the counter had. There don’t seem to be any traces of paper stuck after printing as the stamps are quite smooth in texture over the portion where this flaw is visible. Perhaps experts can provide more inputs on this. There are some other minor print flaws too like black spots on the stamp.
About the stamp: India Post released a commemorative postage stamp on M L Vasanthakumari (3 July 1928 – 31 October 1990) on 3rd July 2018 to commemorate her 90th birth year. She was a Carnatic musician and playback singer for film songs in many Indian languages. A prime disciple of the G.N. Balsuramaniam, she was the youngest among the established musicians of that era, and was the youngest female awardee of the Sangita Kalanidhi award.