‘My Stamp’ from Govt. of India

After recently restarting my philately hobby I discovered that the govt has introduced the concept of ‘My Stamp’. Personally I don’t feel very enthused by the fact that anyone can get a stamp printed on anyone or anything. It takes formal postal stationery commercialization to another level which doesn’t gel with my idea of philately.

The Dept of Posts website, http://postagestamps.gov.in/MyStamp.aspx, explains My Stamp as

‘My Stamp’ is the brand name for personalized sheets of Postage Stamps of India Post. The personalization is achieved by printing a thumb nail photograph of the customer images and logos of institutions, or images of artwork, heritage buildings, famous tourist places, historical cities, wildlife, other animals and birds etc., alongside the selected Commemorative Postage Stamp. 

‘My Stamp’ was first introduced in India during the World Philatelic Exhibition, ‘INDIPEX-2011’. There was considerable demand for it during the exhibition and many requests to resume its printing have since been received. This enthusiasm from stamp lovers prompted India Post to extend the ‘My Stamp’ scheme to cover all Postal Circles. This scheme is available in selected Philatelic Bureaux and counters /Important Post offices/Post Offices situated at tourist places. Selected themes are available at selected My Stamp Counters.

I asked for thoughts from experienced philatelists about what they feel about it. Would you collect these stamps? Are these considered proper stamps or do they come under the category of Cinderella stamps?

Peter Leevers, Secretary at The India Study Circle for Philately, writes

Commercialisation of postal stationery has been around for over a century and gives the collector insight into social issues and fashions. What’s really changed the game, in my view, is the ease by which modern digital printing methods make litho colour so cheap. Design for the old methods of intaglio, embossing and letterpress (typo. In the catalog) needed careful preparation. But stamps were produced with, quite literally, a depth that, by its very nature, offset litho never can.

19 Jun 2016 update: Ravinder Kumar commented:

My stamp is purely a commercial venture to make more money for the postal department.
When I went to a PO at Chennai the clerk said that they have some cricket stickers for sale. She showed me the sheet of New Zealand cricket stamps. Honestly she never knew they were stamps. All so called reputed commonwealth nations have also started commercialising their philately by printing in bulk and offering it at much below postal value! Will Australia or New Zealand sell their $1 or other currencies to other governments for 40 cents or 50 cents? But the stamps with denomination of upto $2 are just printed in quantities in sheets like children’s stickers sold in a stationery shop and sold to ‘Big’ reputed dealers and governments to fool and slay the ‘ innocent goat( the novice collector who buys these excessively printed stamps at lower than their postal value from dealers and think that they had a deal by buying it).
Is it possible for the collectors who had spent a few Lakhs in st. Vincent and other islets exotically called manamagua etc who have printed Diana, cricketers, sports cars in quantities to even recover their hard earned money after even 10 years?
Unfortunately many philatelists in India and rest of the world are being taken for a costly ride by Stamp Printers and Big Stamp Dealers and their distributors and retail dealers throughout the world !
😢 come when we think about these innocent philatelic Goats!🐐🐐🐐

Dipok Dey

A few weeks ago Shri Dipok Dey commented on one of my Facebook posts in a Philatelic group. I didn’t realize the importance of that comment until I came across more about him.

Dipok Dey, born in 1938 in Bangladesh, graduated from Art College in 1965, is a renowned artist, philatelist and journalist from Kolkata. He started collecting stamps since late 50s. He has designed number of stamps, special covers, booklets and greeting cards issued by India Post. He is the first Indian to design UN Stamp in 1985. He has edited ‘Stamp World’ and ‘Indian Revenuer’ philatelic journals and has written several articles on Philately. He is an author of Philatelic Geography, The Bridge and A Hand Book of Unfamiliar Stamps and Rabindranath Tagore and the Post Office a Philatelic Tribute. His knowledge about printing technology of stamps is marvellous. His collections on cinema, printing technology of stamps, women and Second World War etc. have been exhibited in many philatelic exhibitions.

In 2014 Shri Dipok Dey was honoured with ‘Life time achievement award’ by North Bengal Postal Circle of India Post for promoting philately in North Bengal. During ‘Depex-2014’ district level philatelic exhibition held at Darjeeling the Life Time Achievement Award’ was conferred to Shri Dipok Dey but he could not attend the function held on 30th November 2014 at Darjeeling as he was attending Assampex-2014, state level philatelic exhibition held at Guwahati as a member of Jury. On 28th February 2015, Shri Suvash Darnal, Superintendent of Post Offices, Darjeeling Division presented the award to Shri Dipok Dey at his residence in Kolkata.

It is wonderful to know about him. Some articles about him: