BAHAWALPUR: Postal stamps of a number of denominations are unavailable in the General Post Office (GPO) and other post offices of the district for the last several months.

Due to unavailability of postal stamps, the public is facing inconvenience in dispatching their letters, registration and mail through postal service while the federal postal department is also facing losses to the tune of millions of rupees monthly.

On the other hand, unavailability of postal stamps in post offices is proving a boon for the private courier services.

Dawn has learnt the GPO and other post offices in other parts of the city and district are without stamps of small and big denominations like Rs2, Rs5, Rs6, Rs7, Rs10, Rs15.

Muhammad Mohsin, an official at the GPO, told this scribe that the stamps of denomination of Rs3, Rs8, Rs12 and Rs20 were being sold only at the GPO. He says the zonal office is being contacted to regularise the supply of the stamps to the GPO.

A number of people desirous to dispatch their letters, registered mail, urgent mail service (UMS) have told Dawn that when the stamps of required denominations are not available from the GPO, they have to purchase stamps of excessive amount, bearing extra charges.

In many cases, the customers refuse to pay for higher denomination stamps and divert to the private courier services, which, according to them, are more reliable regarding delivery of their letters and parcels quickly as compared to the government postal department.

GPO Senior Post Master Abdul Rauf Khan has confirmed that the stamp stock has not been received from the zonal office since last month.

He shows the WhatApp messages he had sent to the zonal stamp office in Lahore with a request to supply the postal stamps of several denominations. He assures to take up the issue again with the zonal officials concerned in Lahore.

Dawn has learnt that the postal stamps are printed in the Korangi printing press in Karachi. For this purpose, the government imports special paper. After printing, the stamps are sent to the Lahore zonal office, which further supplies these stamps to other parts of the country. Some reports claim that the government could not import the special paper used in stamps during the last few months and it resulted in the shortage of postal stamps.

The customers using the public postal services have demanded the federal postal department to ensure supply of the postal stamps in Bahawalpur.

Public complaints: Deputy Commissioner Irfan Ali Kathia and six assistant commissioners at their respective tehsil headquarters of the district held open revenue Awami Khidmat Courts to redress the complaints of the general public.

According to an official handout, the DC held his open revenue court at Yazman, where he heard a number of applications of the complainants and issued orders to solve their problems at the spot.

ACs held courts at Hasilpur, Ahmedpur East, Yazman, Khairpur Tamewali, and at the city’s two tehsils of Sadar and city. ACs also observed SOPs and directed the applicants to strictly observe Covid-19 SOPs.

BAITUL MAAL: Commissioner retired Capt Zafar Iqbal distributed cheques to 32 deserving people worth over Rs500,000 from the Baitul Maal fund.

Published in Dawn, May 4th, 2021

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