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Sunday, September 30, 2001

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Some real 'heavy' post this

GOVERNMENT DEPARTMENTS, nowadays, are under compulsion to go commercial. This holds good for the postal department too. To this day, it is a department known to be providing heavily- subsidised services to the public.

To attract more business and earn additional revenue, the department has, of late, been charting a new path. It has brought out brochures explaining several of its premium products in a colourful language and glossy texts.

And in line with the new trend, the department, for the first time, had put up a stall in an industrial exhibition, Logistics 2001, being held in the city.

One of the publications talks about ``Logistics Post'', to be launched shortly. The front cover of the brochure says ``You've relied on us to deliver letters and parcels. Now trust us to deliver some real heavy loads''.

The Postal department along with another Central Government's body, Container Corporation of India (CONCOR), will be entering the market of container cargo to transport any loads, weighing more than 250 kg. Customs and port clearance facilities are offered for exporters and importers. Among other value-added services to be provided are credit facilities, door-to-door services, and volume-based discounts. This is for businessmen.

It has something to offer to the public also.

``Pre-paid greeting cards'' is the latest product. Printed in different colours and sizes, the cards come ready with prepaid postage envelopes, eliminating the need to affix stamps. This, the department claims, is a `unique concept' in the country. Moreover, the postage stamps are an exact replica of the cards inside.

The rates of the cards are Rs. 13 and Rs. 16. They will be available at all head post offices.

Also, there are other brochures that mention about the products such as Express Parcel Post, Media Post, and Satellite Post. One of them talks of how articles sent through Speed Post are tracked and traced through a computerised system called ``Speednet''. By providing space in the postal stationery, another brochure says how the postal department, as a media vehicle, has certain advantages over the conventional media.

By T. Ramakrishnan

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