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Acute shortage of Revenue stamp takes its toll

Acute shortage of Revenue stamp takes its toll
Highlights

t is literally a wild goose chase if one wants revenue stamps from any post office in the twin cities. This has been the sorry tale for the past two months leaving thousands of people in all sorts of trouble. Given that revenue stamps symbolise the virtual legal endorsement of documents of every hue,

The Sainikpuri Post Office itself receives over 40 customers every day. Its sub-Post Master, who is clueless, says “I have no idea, when the new stocks will come. We have not received the regular quota from the Trimulgherry HPO. We are not aware of the exact reasons for the shortage. The GPO must cater to the demands.”

It is literally a wild goose chase if one wants revenue stamps from any post office in the twin cities. This has been the sorry tale for the past two months leaving thousands of people in all sorts of trouble. Given that revenue stamps symbolise the virtual legal endorsement of documents of every hue, including the mundane payment voucher of large amounts to Provident Fund forms, there is always a tremendous demand for these stamps by people from all walks of life.

However, the supply has always been rather erratic vis-à-vis the demand. Despite standing in long queues at major post offices and even sub-post offices, most potential customers return home empty-handed as the city is facing acute shortage of the stamps of all denominations. Consequently, traders, business establishments, administrative offices, et al have been finding it difficult to comply with their chores and are looking at alternative arrangements so as to avoid any backlog.

Making hay have been the petty traders who smartly store stamps and meet the urgent requirements of customers. Of course, they come at a premium. Alas, most of them have also exhausted the ‘stock’. Notwithstanding cautions against black-marketing of revenue stamps, these enterprising businessmen do resort to the measure. It is a racket that thrives during ‘shortages’ right under the noses of officers concerned.

“I checked with all post offices. Not one has a running stock for at least two months now. The problem seems perennial,” says a disgruntled customer coming out of the Sainikpuri Post Office. The Sainikpuri Post Office itself receives over 40 customers every day. Its sub-Post Master, who is clueless, says “I have no idea, when the new stocks will come. We have not received the regular quota from the Trimulgherry HPO. We are not aware of the exact reasons for the shortage. The GPO must cater to the demands.”

Amidst the hullabaloo, insiders point out that this has been one of the critical components of the bifurcation that the State Government has chosen to ignore. “It was the responsibility of the State Government to place its order with the Nashik Security Press. What I believe is that the government had not given the orders yet,” points out a senior official from the Department of Posts on condition of anonymity.

According to G Suryanarayana, a senior official, “the postmasters of the respective post offices have reportedly placed an indent before the Central Stamp Depots (CSD) for the revenue stamps a couple of months ago. But there appears to be no sign of the delivery yet.”

Concurring it, Vijaylakshmi, supervisor with the CSD, says, “In actuality, we have not received any stock for the past five months. The last indent worth around Rs 4.3 crore was placed three months back. It has not been supplied but we remain hopeful that it could be delivered this week.” Suffice to say that the lack of seriousness in resolving the issue and the corresponding administrative lapses (no one is aware by when this could be redressed) put a blot on the entire system.

By:Augustin Kurian

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