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Stamps capture Cup fever

- Postal circle takes soccer route to promote philately

Guwahati, June 13: The Assam postal circle has taken the soccer route to promote philately among youths.

A set of four commemorative postage stamps on Fifa World Cup 2014 were the cynosure of curious eyes at a philatelic exhibition organised by the postal department at Meghdoot Bhawan here this morning.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi yesterday unveiled the set of stamps by the department of posts to mark the quadrennial showpiece.

The stamps depicting on-field action and the official World Cup mascot Fuleco are priced at Rs 25 (two stamps) and Rs 5 (two stamps).

“This is for the first time that we are organising such an exhibition on stamps commemorating World Cup soccer here. The aim of the show is to promote philately among the younger generation at a time when not many of them inculcate the habit of collecting stamps,” Arundhati Ghosh, the chief postmaster-general, Assam postal circle, said here today.

A few toppers of this year’s Class XII exams were felicitated and presented My Stamps (personalised postage stamps) while a brief quiz on philately was also held.

Ten football trainees of the Sports Authority of India (Guwahati regional centre) were also invited to be part of the educative process on not just sport but other facets of history as depicted on the stamps and covers.

Miniature sheets, first-day covers and brochures were also displayed at the daylong exhibition.

“Apart from the philatelic bureau at Guwahati GPO, the stamps along with the special covers and miniature sheets will be available in the other post offices of Assam circle,” she said.

Four frames had the collections of a city-based philatelist Vishal Sanganeria.

“I have exhibited 38 special covers of the Queen’s baton relay of the 2010 Commonwealth Games in today’s exhibition. The covers were taken out by the postal circles of different states and Union Territories of the country. The special cover from Assam has pictures of Bihu, Rangghar and a bullfight along with two stamps of the 2010 Games,” said Sanganeria, who has over a lakh stamps collected since 1988.

Asked if the growing “net culture” was a hindrance to the hobby, he disagreed.

“On the contrary, now youngsters know more about what stamp and on which day it is released. So, while they may not write letters any more in the age of Facebook and mobiles, they would still be curious about stamps,” he said.


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