Postal Department should make a consolidated assessment of all its loss-making services, and should either abolish these or raise minimum tariff to at least rupee one. Data reveals continuous and sharp decline in use of ‘Inland Letter Cards’ and ‘Post Cards’, tariffs of which are highly subsidised. Useless subsidies have to be compensated by either additional taxes or budgetary deficits both resulting in price-rise.
While ‘Inland Letter Cards’ have totally lost their utility, ‘Post Cards’ are being grossly misused for commercial activities and fun. There are reports that highly subsidised ‘Post Cards’ presently priced at just 50 paise (25 paise in case of sponsored Meghdoot category) are largely used by chit-fund companies.
Many people get rubber-stamps of multiple names put on post-cards for sending to All India Radio (Akashvani) only to listen their names in programmes presented on listeners’ choice of film-songs. Interestingly in their choice, they mention ‘Any song’! Surprisingly Postal-Department delivers all such printed post-cards to All India Radio even though tariff for printed post-cards was fixed much higher at rupees six to discourage such misuse of highly subsidised post-cards. Enquiry should made how ordinary post-cards with rubber-stamped messages are delivered to Akashvani at normal tariff of rupee one rather than putting these in category of higher-priced category of printed post-cards.
Postal Department should discontinue any further printing of Inland Letter Cards. However Post Cards for time being may be continued but only in sponsored Meghdoot’ category that too with tariff of rupee one. With 25-paise coin already discontinued, and 50-paise coins not very much in circulation with even beggars refusing to accept such low-denomination coins, policy should be to have minimum postal-tariff of rupee one even for registered newspapers.
Already production-cost of newspapers having been increased manifolds, it is senseless that Postal Department may continue to bear such a heavy subsidy on mailing these which should be at least minimized.
Subhash Nagar, Jammu