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Friday, October 20, 2017

This 91-year-old ‘Postman’ still serves the department



When he joined the Department of Posts as an ‘outsider’ in 1940, P.M. Gurusamy, popularly known as ‘PMG’ in the department circle, would have never imagined that he would remain integrated with the department for more than seven decades and continue his ‘service’ even after retirement.

While serving as an ‘outsider’ (casual worker) at Ramanathapuram Head Post Office after completing his third form (Class VIII), Mr. Gurusamy joined Quit India Movement in 1942.

He was sent to jail, but released the very next day as the jailor found him hardly 16 years old.

The jailor informed the Postmaster that Mr. Gurusamy faced no case and there was no bar on him to continue his service in the department.

On March 3, 1943, Mr. Gurusamy was posted as a Class IV employee at the post office in Mandapam.

After retiring as a Selection Grade Postman in 1985, Mr. Gurusamy – he is now 91 years old – has been visiting the Head Post Office for 32 years, helping people who visit the post office and promoting postal products, especially ‘My Stamp’, the personalised sheets of postage stamps of India Post.

He has been visiting the Head Post Office for two hours in the morning and an hour in the evening, helping people fill up forms, and deposit and withdraw money. He has also been encouraging them to start recurring deposit and savings bank accounts or join ‘Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana,’ designed for rural people who fall victims to dubious financial companies.

“God is keeping me in good health and I will continue the service as long as I can,” he told The Hindu during an interaction. Recently, the Postmaster ‘pulled him up’ for coming late and he considered the ‘reprimanding’ as the biggest compliment. No one would visit the post office after retirement and Mr. Gurusamy is an exception, says N.J. Udaya Singh, Superintendent of Posts. He has popularised ‘My Stamp’ product in a big way, he adds.

“I have a passion for ‘My Stamp’ and have got the personalised stamps for more than 150 people, including former President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam and his elder brother A.P.J. M. Maraikayar,” says Mr. Gurusamy. Appreciating his service, Karaikudi Kamban Kazhagam has honoured him with ‘Seva Ratna’ award.

Mr. Gurusamy had served as a Postman in Dhanushkodi for five years since 1945 and continues to be the living link to the 1964 cyclonic tragedy that destroyed the post office and the once flourishing town.
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