Saturday, August 8

“Swamy assails Sanjay Stamp”... a peep into history.

I collect stamps. ‘Philatelist’, they call me. From my childhood, stamps fascinated me. Even now.

One of the most interesting aspects of philately is to track the history that stamps tell before its publication and post publication.

I looked at an old stamp... not so old...that spoke to me lots. It is the picture of late Sanjay Gandhi that I hold in a 1981 stamp. Today, the story of this young man is history. It is said that he brought Suzuki Motors to India that changed the drive of this nation. It is also said that he run what was known the ‘Sanjay Effect’— a sterilization measure that rocked the foundations of this nation’s ethos. It was crafted such that a sterilization certificate was to be produced by every young man if he were to apply for a rural credit! Even the prisoners weren’t spared. They were to go under the knife if they were to enjoy a parole.

What bemuses me is a press cutting from 1981 Indian Express that tells: “Swamy assails Sanjay Stamp”. It reads: Janata Party leader Subramaniam Swamy on Saturday criticised the Government decision to issue a postal stamp to commemorate the first death anniversary of Sanjay Gandhi and said his party would cancel it IF returned to power. “We would also recover the cost from Mrs. Gandhi,” he told reporters.

Janatha Party never returned to power. World would soon forgot about Sanjay’s controversial stamp. No one got the money back from Mrs.Gandhi for printing these stamps! Mrs. Gandhi continued to rule India till her heroic death in the hands of trusted bodyguards. And, she still keeps her legacy alive through her grandson!!

How much the world has changed!

1 comment:

Nemo said...

Amazing story....please share such philatelic stories from your Pandora's box.