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Monday, July 30, 2012

Bihar government to recruit 1,000 firemen

 Application forms would be made available at designated 81 post offices located in district headquarters and sub-divisional headquarters across the state
PATNA: After a gap of 22 years, the state government has decided to recruit 1,000 firemen to at least fill up the vacancies as the fire services in the state was in complete disarray.
Perhaps the fear of getting embroiled in legal wrangles made the senior officers concerned desist from recruiting firemen. As a result, the number of vacancies swelled over the years. However, when the situation took a turn for the worse and it became difficult to attend to emergency fire calls even in the state capital, the former DG, homeguards and fire services, Manoje Nath, before his superannuation in June this year, suggested the state home department to recruit firemen through the Central Selection Board for Constables (CSBC).
The home department accepted Nath's suggestion. CSBC chairman Sunit Kumar, who is currently busy with recruitment of over 7,000 police constables, told TOI that the ad for firemen's recruitment would be issued soon. Application forms would be made available at designated 81 post offices located in district headquarters and sub-divisional headquarters across the state soon, he added.
The work of recruitment of police constables and firemen would be taken up simultaneously by the CSBC, said Kumar and added that forms meant for the candidates belonging to Schedule Caste and Schedule Tribe categories would be made available at a cost of Rs 75 per form while those belonging to general, backward and most backward castes would get the same at Rs 200 per form. All forms would carry security code and cannot be copied.
Chief Post Master of GPO, Patna, has been made the nodal officer for selling of forms, so that candidates do not face any difficulty in procuring forms. All postmasters of the designated post offices were imparted training jointly by Sunit Kumar and director, postal services (business development), Anil Kumar, on Sunday at the GPO here.
Post offices had earlier sold 9 lakh forms for the recruitment of police constables, and it is expected that a large number of youths would also apply for the firemen's job.
Source : The Times of India, July 30, 2012

Brit postal deptt to release stamps of Olympic gold winners

The Royal Mail, the British postal department, is going all out to help those seeking to preserve a slice of history with their inch-sized offerings.

A day before the big games bring big numbers to London, Andrew Hammond, managing director of Royal Mail, exclusively speaks to TOI about the initiatives they've launched, including stamps that will be released the day after a British Olympian wins gold, and how they'd be open to discussing the idea of Bollywood stamps if approached with an interesting proposal.

Stamping the winners

Under the Next Day Gold Medal Stamps initiative, the department will print stamps featuring every Great Britain team member who wins a gold medal. And regardless of what time the medal is won, the stamps will be put on sale the very next day by lunchtime. Says Hammond, "Just like the 2000 Sydney Olympics, 2004 Greece Olympics and 2008 Beijing Olympics, we're going to put our winners on these next day stamps. We'll use their action shots on the stamps."

Citing logistical issues, Hammond says that they cannot print pictures of all gold medal winners and that's why they are concentrating on English winners. He says, "Our market for this is largely in the UK. We literally would be doing this overnight and the number of medals won at the games run in hundreds. That's why we are focusing on GB team members."

However, he is confident that they would be able to pull it off, saying, "We've been preparing for this for two years, and have had a dedicated team in place for this. We have tested the procedure, and we have printers across the country who will help us put these out by lunchtime the next day."

Hammond also spoke about the four stamps that the department will be unveiling today at the opening ceremony. The stamps, he says, celebrate their country as the venue, and show four London landmarks in the background. In September, adds Hammond, the department will release a new set of Olympic stamps, featuring iconic moments from the games.

While refusing to comment on the revenue the department expects to generate from the sale of stamps — both online and otherwise — he does say that they hope to win as many gold medals as they can.

As far as Bollywood and an Indian connection to the stamps goes, Hammond says they have nothing in the pipeline, but they are always open to multi-cultural themes for their offerings. He says, "We focus on key anniversaries, but we are open to discussions with other postal departments. However, we do tend to work a couple of years in advance."

Some interesting facts

- Because postage stamps were invented in the UK, it is the only country in the world that does not have to put its name on them - just the monarch's head.
- Her Majesty, the Queen, approves all stamp designs before they are printed.
- On special stamps, the Queen's head must always face inwards on the stamp, and be in the top left or top right. 
Source : The Times of India, July 27, 2012

Philately being stamped out

NAGPUR: It is something which gives you the thrill of discovery, the power of knowledge.. to run a showreel of history in front of you and, finally, something that derives the pursuer immense happiness and satisfaction. The members of a generation which was ruled by philately would relate to the description. Philately, or stamp collection, was a hobby which provided its pursuer a window to the world.
"Each stamp has a story to tell. If you study the stamps of each country you can see the various phases through which they have gone, their evolution and history," said Jayant Khedkar, philatelist and member of Nagpur's Philatelist Society.
According to him philately is not only pursuing a hobby, but also knowledge. "A stamp teaches you, it covers all the areas of your life, it talks to you about the history, culture and scientific development of the place," said Khedkar.
But philately, once known as 'the king of hobbies and the hobby of the kings', seems to have lost its appeal over the years. The number of people getting involved in it has dwindled and come down.
"I cannot see the excitement which we had for stamps in the new generation. In today's fast life, they don't have enough time to spare on a hobby," said Nisar Akhtar Ansari, who has been collecting stamps for the last 36 years.
The main reasons that are being attributed to the dwindling number of stamp enthusiasts are the onslaught of mobile and Internet technology along with a busy lifestyle. "In the earlier days people used to write letters. The sources of entertainment were also limited which is why various kinds of hobbies flourished," said Captain Mukesh Kapila, of Army Postal Department.
The lack of exposure to the very existence of stamps is also another reason for the hobby being in the danger of extinction. "Nowadays where do you see stamps? Even at our homes when letters come, they have computer stickers on them or they come by couriers which don't use stamps. How will you get attracted to something which you haven't seen enough," asked Anant Pathak, philatelist and stamp dealer.
He also said that many-a-times the supply is also erratic. Pathak informed that initially the first-day covers used to be sold only on one day, which increased its desirability. But now, it is sold for a month, and thus taking away its uniqueness. On the other hand, some stamps were supplied in very less numbers.
But Khedkar is far more optimistic about the situation. "If the collectors are becoming less, then it is better for the few collectors who remain and will remain as our value will be more. And that is why, though there is certainly a fall in numbers of philatelists, I am sure that the hobby will never die," he said.
He even said that it is not that there is a complete stagnation. Experienced philatelists feel that though a few new faces do come in, their methods are not right. "Though some people have good collection of stamps, because of lack of knowledge they do not know how to organize and sort them," said Kapila.
Also, they say that the newbies don't concentrate on themes and generally end up just collecting them. "Philately is different from stamp collection. Collection is just what the word means, while philately, it not only means collecting stamps, but also studying it," Khedkar said.
Lack of time, mobile, Internet, television, couriers or the lack of enthusiasm from the postal authorities themselves, whatever the reasons might be, the fact is that this hobby has fallen from grace. One can only hope that it is not lost in the sands of time forever.
Source : The Times of India, July 29, 2012

Raksha Bandhan celebrations: Post office gears up to deliver rakhi envelopes

RAMGARH: The head post office in town has planned a delivery mechanism for rakhis in the run-up to Raksha Bandhan next Thursday.
The postal department has bought 3,000 special colorful waterproof envelopes to ensure that the rakhis reach safely even during rain. Each envelope in yellow and pink colours costs Rs 7.
Head post master Ramesh Ram said on Saturday that the postal department took initiatives to ensure safe and fast delivery of rakhis sent to people here by their sisters who were living outside. The department has also deployed seven additional employees for delivery of rakhi envelopes.
"We are fully prepared for the fast delivery of rakhi envelopes to brothers living in Ramgarh town whose sisters sent their love in shape of Rakhi on the eve of the festival," said Ram.
"As soon as we receive the rakhi envelope, we immediately distribute the envelopes to the addressee who eagerly wait to receive rakhis from their sisters living far away from them. Many people came to the post enquiring about their rakhi envelopes. We told them that they need not to come to the post office as the delivery of rakhi envelopes has been kept in on top priority," Ram added.
Source :

IndiaPost gets into domestic and global marketing of Saffron, world's costliest spice

SILIGURI: Like the service 'Tea Post,' introduced couple of years back from Darjeeling, now Indiapost gets into marketing of Saffron, believed to be world's costliest spice. After national stepping, India post plans to launch the service at international level too.
The service was launched today (Wednessday) by Jenab Gulam Hassan Mir, Hon'ble Minister of Agriculture of J & K at Pampore, the saffron hub of the state as well as Country.

"J & K Postal department, in association with the local growers and dealers of Saffron, is getting involved in promoting and marketing world's best Saffron from Kashmir. The item will be marketed and delivered through India Post across the under the brand name 'Saffron post' after intensive quality control check by the State Government approved institution," said, Mr. John Samuel, Chief Post Master General. "Based upon the national level response, we will get into the international market too with this brand," said Mr. Samuel.
Saffron is believed to be the costliest spice in the world. As estimated, while costing Rs 1 lakh a kg in wholesale level, it sales at a price of Rs 200 per Gram at retail. Near 2 lakh people in J & k are directly dependent on Saffron cultivation.
"Indiapost's direct intervention from entire field to market of saffron under 'Saffron post' brand initiative, will diminish the presence of middlemen in te entire chain and ensure higher pricing for the growers," said Mr. Samuel.
According to botanists, Saffron has a long medicinal benefit history with anticarcinogenic (cancer-suppressing), anti-mutagenic (mutation-preventing), immunomodulating or antioxidant -like properties.
At present, 'Saffron Post' is available as ready stock in packets of 0.5 grams, 1 gram and 5 grams at select post offices in Kashmir. "But, people from any corner of the country can order and pay for the exclusive spice through major post offices or book through E Post office portal to get the item delivered through speed post,"" said Mr. Samuel. 
Source :


Manihsinath Bhawan, A/2/95 Rajouri Garden, New Delhi. 110 027.
Website: confederationhq., E

Circular No.13/2012 Dated:  29th July, 2012
All National Sectt. Members:
Dear Comrade,
                                        Kindly recall the discussions we had at our meeting held at the CHQ on 25th.  For paucity of time, we could not carry out the discussion for finalising the campaign programme on that day.  The house said that another meeting after the 26th programme might be convened to finalise the campaign programme for the impending strike action.  Most of the Comrades expressed the difficulty in undertaking another visit to Delhi in the month of August, 2012.  Taking into account that the strike action is slated for 12th December, 2012, and hardly four months are at our disposal and in view of the fact that October and November being festival months, we propose the following programme for your consideration.  Your views in the matter may please be communicated to the CHQ through e-mail latest by 10th August, 2012.  We are to deploy the Sectt. Members to different States.  The Secretary General will intimate the final decision after the feed back on 10th August, 2012.   Kindly ensure that you send in your views well before 9th August, 2012.
Details of the Programme Schedule
Campaign programme in September, 2012
11, 12 and 13; 18, 19 and 20th  and 25, 26 and 27 September:  The proposal is that a team of Sectt members will be in charge of the  States indicated in the Annexure.  The group of dates indicated will be chosen by them to finalize the programme in consultation with the concerned State Committee.  The State Convention will be held on the last date of the group of Date and the two dates prior to the State Convention will be used for the purpose of office wise meeting in which the National Sectt. Members will participate.
1st to 12th October 2012
In the same manner as indicated above, district level convention and meetings will be held.  The State Committee of  Confederation Office Bearers and Circle Secretaries of affiliates will participate in those meetings/conventions.  The State Committees can explore the possibility of Vehicle jathas to cover important stations of the states.
19th November 2012
Mass Deputation and Serving Strike Notice to the respective heads of Departments/Office as the case may be.  At the National level, the notice will be served on the Cabinet Secretary.
20,21,22 and 23rd Nov. 2012
Relay evening Dharna for three hours (between 17 hours and 21 hours) at a common place to be organised by the Confederation State Committee with the participation of all affiliated organizations.
11th Dec. 2012
Lunch hour /evening massive demonstration in front of respective offices for mobilizing the employees for the strike the next day.
12th Dec. 2012
The one day token Strike.

                Kindly indicate the changes you wish to make this programme and inform the undersigned as quickly as possible. 
                With greetings,
Yours fraternally,
K.K.N. Kutty
Secretary General
List of comrades deployed for the purpose of the Campaign.
S.No.     Name of the Comrades                                   States to be covered

1.            S.K. Vyas and P. Suresh                                 Rajasthan & Madhya Pradesh

2.            K. Ragavendran & Mani Achari                       Tamilnadu & Chhattisgarh

3.            K.V. Sreedharan & M. Krishnan                       Kerala & North Eastern States

4.            K.P. Rajagopal & I.S. Dabas                            Bihar & West Bengal

5.            N. Somayya & M.Durai Pandian.                      Karnataka

6.            K.K.N.Kutty & Narasimhan.                               Andhra Pradesh and Delhi.

7.            Giri Raj Singh & V. Bhattacharya                      Punjab, Haryana & J&K.

8.            M.S.Raja & A.K. Kanojia                                     U.P. and Uttarakhand.

9.            Ashok B Salunkhe & Jayaraj.                             Gujarat & Maharashtra

10.          Pijush Roy and Nageswar Rao                          Orissa & Jharkhand

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Confederation Circular

A-2/95,Manishinath Bhawan, Rajouri Garden,
New Delhi-110 027,
Tel: 011-2510 5324:  Mobile: 98110 48303

Circular No: 12/2012 Dated 28th July, 2012

Dear Comrades


            The National Sectt. of the Confederation places on record its appreciation and gratitude for the tireless efforts of the State Committees and the affiliates in making the programme of 26th July, 2012, i.e. the March to Parliament a grand success.  The gathering at Jantar Mantal  had been magnificent and far higher than our expectation.  As per the initial information supplied to us, every State has strived to mobilize maximum number of comrades to participate in the programme so as also was the endeavor of the affiliates.  More than 20,000 comrades converged at the Parliament Street with placards, banners, flags and wearing different colour caps. We anticipated quite an amount of difficulties and problems on 26th due to the decisions taken by the “Anna Hazare Committee against corruption”  to organize indefinite dharna/fasting programme at the same venue.  At the last minute, the Police authorities had to shift the spot at Jantar Mantar where we were to commence the procession.  We could not get sufficient time to convey the changes made to our comrades, who had already started from different stations.

 We also note with satisfaction that the leaders who had been entrusted to undertake the country wide campaign programme had done so with dedication and sincerity.  As per the report we have at the CHQ, the campaign programme as chalked out had been carried out in all places except in Madhya Pradesh. The inability of the MP State Committee due to some unavoidable reasons had its adverse impact on mobilization of the comrades from that State. Similarly, we have been informed that the expected number of comrades had not reached from the North West Region, especially Punjab and Jammu and Kashmir.  Perhaps, we might have placed the target for these states unrealistically.

 The procession commenced at 11.30 AM and the first contingent reached the rallying point at 12.15 PM.  The meeting commenced immediately thereafter.  Com. President, Working President and the Secretary General, National Federation of Postal Employees on behalf of the Confederation addressed the gathering.  Com. Tapan Sen, Secretary General, CITU, Com, Amarjeet Kaur, Secretary AITUC, Com. Basudeb  Acharya, MP and leader of the CPI(M) in the Parliament were the other speakers.  The Secretary General while concluding the programme conveyed the decisions of the National Secretariat to go in for a serious campaign programme in the form of Mass Dharna, Demonstrations, Rally before the Governor’s house etc.  He also declared that the Central Government employees under the banner of the Confederation will be on a day’s strike on 12th December, 2012. (12.12.12). Our next step must be to draw inspiration from the success of our March to Parliament programme and advance our movement to the impending strike action to create sufficient sanctions so that the Government will announce the setting up of the 7th CPC  and hold meaningful negotiation for the settlement of the other demands in the charter. The National Secretariat will meet in the first week of August, 2012.  Notice is being issued separately.  All Sectt. , members are requested to attend the meeting.

            We have published quite a number of photos of the rally in our Website.  The Press Statement issued   on 27th along with the copy of the Memorandum to the Prime Minister has also been placed. Kindly use the explanatory memorandum for the intensive campaign you will have to undertake for the strike action.


            The joint Committee set up by the National Anomaly Committee to consider the MACP related issues met on 27th July, 2012.  The Staff Side was represented at the meeting by the following comrades:

Com. M. Raghaviah

Com. Umraomal Purohit

Com. S.K. Vyas

Com. C. Srikumar

Com. K.K.N. Kutty

Com. Shivgopal Misra

Com. Bhosle

The report prepared by the sub-committee after three rounds of discussions was reviewed at the meeting.  The points that came up for discussion and the decisions taken are as under:
Grant of MACP in the promotional hierarchy:  The Staff Side pointed out that the ACP which was in vogue till the advent of MACP had been on promotional hierarchy.  In the name of improvement of the scheme, the Government cannot unilaterally change it, especially when the concerned employees do not consider it as advantageous.  They suggested that the employees must be allowed to retain the ACP for the first two promotions and for the third promotion MACP can be extended.  However, the Official Side said that it would not be possible to have any hybrid scheme.  In fact, they added that the 6th CPC had suggested for two career progressions only and that too on grade pay hierarchy.  The govt. had improved upon and therefore it was not possible for them to agree for the suggestion of the Staff Side.  They also stated that the reason for bringing about grade pay hierarchy was to bring about uniformity in the scheme across the Departments as the promotional hierarchy varies from one department to another.  They declined to consider the suggestion for promotional hierarchy based MACP.

The Staff Side then pointed that in the last meeting of the Committee, the Official Side taking into account the difficulties and disadvantages experienced by the employees in many departments which were presented by the Staff Side had agreed to consider department wise/cadre wise options.  The Staff Side further pointed out that the suggestion of the Official Side would not go to resolve the issue.  They said that option must be provide for each individual employee to choose either the ACP or MACP whichever is beneficial to him as is provided in the CCS(RP) Rules.  The unilateral withdrawal of a benefit from an employee is not permissible.  They also stated that the Official Side has not pointed out the difficulties in agreeing to this proposal.  After some discussions, the Official Side said that they would re-examine the issue of individual option and will come up with their considered view at the next meeting of the NAC.

 Counting 50% of service of the Temporary status/casual labourers for the purpose of MACP:  In the light of the discussion at the meeting, the Official Side agreed to examine the matter.

Treatment of employees selected under LDCE Scheme and GDCE Scheme:  The Official Side agreed to issue orders on the same lines as has been issued under the ACP Scheme.  The Staff Side stated that wherever examination is the criterion for promotion/fast track promotion, the service rendered by such employees in the lower post must be ignored and such promotion should be treated as appointment and the promotion scheme to commence from the date of such appointment.  This was not agreed to by the official side on the plea that such appointments are against promotion quota and therefore, they are to be considered as promotion only.  The Staff Side them pointed out that this issue had been the subject matter of judicial consideration before the Tribunal and the Tribunal has given the decision in favour of the employees.  The Official Side wanted a copy of the judgement to react to this.

Date of effect of the Scheme:  The Staff Side pointed out that the date of effect of MACP Scheme must be from 1.1.2006.  The analogy of the 5th CPC has no application as ACP was introduced after discussion with the Staff Side on a later date.  Since the Government issued the orders of the 6th CPC and the acceptance of the MACP with modification almost simultaneously, it should have been made effective from 1.1.2006.  They also pointed out that the MACP is not an allowance to be made application from 1.9.2008.  The Official Side pointed out that the benefit emanating from the MACP i.e. the third promotion was applicable to all existing employees who were in service after 1.9.2008.  The Staff Side demanded that the benefit has been denied to those who retired between 1.1.2006 and 30.8.2008.  The Official Side agreed to consider application of the new MACP with effect from 1.1.2006 for those who retired/died between 1.1.2006 and 30.8.2008.

 Financial up-gradation under MACP in the case of staff who join another unit/organization on request.  It was agreed at  the last meeting that the services rendered in another recruiting unit/organization will be taken into account for counting service for promotion under MACP.  The Staff Side however, pointed out that in many cases, the employees are compelled to seek reversion in order to be transferred to another recruiting unit.  In their case, the promotion so earned at the present recruiting unit and which have been foregone is being counted as one promotion under MACP.  The Official Side agreed to look into this matter and issue necessary clarificatory orders.

 Stepping up of pay of senior incumbent with the junior as a consequence of ACP/MACP.  The Official Side stated that in the light of the judgments delivered in the matter they will have the case looked into and necessary instructions issued.  They also stated that certain instructions in the matter has already been issued, copy of which will be made available to the Staff Side.       

 The bench mark question for promotion under MACP.  The Official Side agreed to issue a clarificatory order stating that if the promotion is on seniority cum fitness basis, MACP will also be on seniority cum fitness basis.

                There had been no discussions on other points incorporated in the report.  The stand taken by the Official side in those matters remains unchanged.  You may kindly access the report from the website of the Department of Personnel along with the relevant orders.

            With greetings,

Yours fraternally,

K.K.N. Kutty
Secretary General