Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Armenia-India Joint Stamp Issue (2018)

Original Post (17 Jan 2018): I've been trying to get details for the joint stamp issue between India and Armenia over the last year and a half. This stamp issue was discussed in bilateral meetings since 2016 and will likely materialize this year. I've been able to confirm from Haypost and India Post that the theme for this joint issue will be Dances. In the recent past, India has used dance as a subject for joint issues with Cyprus (2006), Mexico (2010), Portugal (2017) and Russia (2017). It would have been nice to see some more creativity from the India Post officials to find similarities between the two cultures and then select a subject. All these Indian dance forms can easily be commemorated on a separate set of stamps dedicated to Dances of India.

Diplomatic contact between Armenia and India were established in 1992 and the stamp issue will likely celebrate 25 years of this relationship. The joint stamp is currently scheduled for issuance in third week of March 2018, but I will confirm this as soon as additional information is available.

Possible Armenian Dance forms: Kochari, Berd or Trahag

Any guesses for Indian Dance forms?

India Post 2017 Stamp Program (Archived)

Click on the images below to enlarge and right click to save. Small print quantities are highlighted in yellow.

Update (17 Jan 2018): I've finally managed to find information for November and December 2017 stamp issues. This covers details for stamp printing formats and design information for the whole entire year. I've highlighted some of the stamp issues that have relatively low print runs and may be good for collectors to keep an extra few copies for future. There were excessive number of stamps issued by India Post and if the images below are not clear, I'd recommend to save a copy on your desktop and then zoom in or print as needed. I've also included MyStamp sheets in the second image below. There are several MyStamps that may not have made it to ePost or the market, but were likely printed over the last year. If you find any errors in this post, let me know in the comments below. I try to provide accurate information, but I'll happily update if needed.
Update (28 May 2017): It's taken a while to get all information for stamp releases in March and April 2017. A few MyStamp sheetlets were issued in February and March, but not available for purchase until late April. Dates for these stamps have been included below.
Update (04 Mar 2017): Information on stamps issued in February is included in the table below. Several MyStamp issues were also issued over the last few weeks and have been updated as well.
Update (03 Feb 2017): Here are the details for stamps issued by India Post during January 2017. Information for all issues became available relatively quickly and thus I can share now. Quite a few stamp issues are likely to be released throughout the year, so keep checking back.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

India Post Stamp Updates 2018 (Jan-Jun 2018)

Update (16 Jan 2018): I've been sharing details for stamp subjects on the blog and on Twitter, which can be used from 2017-2022 to develop a good issue program. Some of the subjects are nearing their anniversary events and will likely be commemorated with postal stamps. Take a look at the list below. I will soon share additional details for some personalities that are likely to be on India Post stamps this year as well. Like always, do mention BetterPhilately in conversations on social media using #BetterPhila.
Possible India Post stamp issues (2018).
Update (15 Jan 2018): We are still waiting on details for stamps to be issued in 2018, but the year began with the first release on 08th January. Last year, two stamps viz. ICAR-Central Plantation Crops Research Institute and Goa Tiatr (125th anniversary) were printed, but never put for sale. It appeared that India Post took cognizance of the typos on both the stamps. Like I had pointed out on out Twitter feed, ICAR-CPCRI stamp had an error in the Hindi acronym of ICAR (), and the Goan Tiatr stamp spelled 'Tiatr' incorrectly as 'Tiater'. The ICAR-CPCRI stamp was re-printed with minor design changes and issued in Kasargod earlier this month. The Union Cabinet Minister for Statistics and Program Implementation was present along with postal officials and institute staff. The interesting piece is that copies of the old stamp (with 2017 year printed) are being sold for $40 or Rupees 7500 on eBay. I wonder how many of these old stamps slipped out illegally. I've posted images of both the 2017 and 2018 stamps below.

In other news, it appears that a stamp (possibly, on Ramayana) will be issued on 25th January, during the India-ASEAN Commemorative Summit in New Delhi. India and South East Asian countries have a lot of common cultural aspect, Ramayana being one of them.

Possible Stamp Issues
Defense Research & Development Organization (DRDO) - 60 Years
India-ASEAN Commemorative Summit (Ramayana)
ICAR-CPCRI (Central Plantation Crops Research Institute) - New stamp from 2018 (above) and the old print from 2017 (below). There are minor design differences in the two sheets.
Original Post (27 Dec 2017): I will start posting details for possible stamp issues and other updates for 2018 in a few weeks, but I'm carrying over several stamp subjects that were either or approved or considered for issuance and could be released in 2018. Let me know if you have other details to share with fellow stamp collectors. Happy New Year!

Possible Stamps Issues
India-South Africa: Joint Issue (Deendayal Updadhyaya & Oliver R. Tambo)
Paika Rebellion (200 Years)
Patna University
Potter's Wheel (Republic Day 2018)
C. Kesavan
Swami Karpatri

BetterPhilately Wish List
Amritlal Nagar
B. D. Jatti
Balasaheb Thackarey
Balasheb Deoras
Bhairon Singh Shekhawat
Chinmayananda Saraswati
Dr. Muthulakshmi Reddy
Eknath Ranade
Gopal Swarup Pathak
Guru Nanak Dev - 550th Parkash Utsav
I. K. Gujral
J. Jayalalithaa
K. R. Narayanan
Khushabhau Thakre
Laxmanrao Inamdar
Mohammad Hidayatullah
N. Sanjeeva Reddy
Nelson Mandela
P. V. Narasimha Rao
Shivmangal Singh Suman
Siyaram Sharan Gupt
Srimant Sankardev
Swami Abhedananda
V. P. Singh

19th Kushok Bakula Rinpoche
Air Force Marshal Arjan Singh
Amrita Pritam
B. K. S. Iyengar
Chandrakant Patel
Dhanraj Bhagat
G. L. Bhargava
L. L. Narayan
Maharani Gayatri Devi
Maharshi Mahesh Yogi
Maniram Dewan
Queen Heo Hwang-ok (Korean queen from Ayodhya)
Ramamand Sagar
Sikander Bakht
Sudhir Phadke
T. Nagi Reddy
Vinda Karandikar

100 Years of Kheda Movement
100 Years of Sabarmati Ashram
150th Birth Anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi
50 Years of Commercial Nuclear Power - Tarapur
Auroville (Golden Jubilee)
Bhagvadgita
Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute
Bose Institute
CISF - Central Industrial Security Force
Dakshin Bharat Hindi Prachar Sabha
Dayalbagh
Gir Wildlife Sanctuary
High Court of Punjab & Haryana Centenary
India-UN Joint Issue: International Day of Yoga
International Film Festival of India (Golden Jubilee)
Jyotirlinga Temples
ISRO - Golden Jubilee (Magalyaan and Chandrayan)
Lions International Centenary
Osmania University, Hyderabard (100 Years) - MyStamp
Rajkumar School, Rajkot
Ravenshaw University, Cuttack (150 Years) - MyStamp
Sherwood College, Nainital
The Maihar Band (100 Years)
The Yoga Institute, Mumbai (100 Years)

Stamps Approved for Issuance
Thematic Issues
Aquaculture
Birds: Endangered & Critically Endangered
Boats of India
Bridal Costumes of India
Four Dhamas (Char Dham)
Fragrant Stamps (Chocolate, Strawberry)
Historical Gates of Indian Forts
Holiday Destinations
India’s Participation in World War I
Indian Fashion Industry
Indian Perfume
Jataka Tales
Mangalyan
Mehandi (Lawsona inermis)
Minerals of India
Musical Instruments (Chimta, Dotara, Ektara, Khartal, Tumbi)
Palace of Wheels
Pilatus Induction
Puppets
Shaktipeeth Temples (Kalighat, Kamkhya, Meenakshi, Vaishno Devi)
Solar System
Terracotta Temples of India
Traditional Embroideries of India
Tribes of India
UNESCO Heritage Sites
Wildlife – Flora & Fauna

Other Issues
University of Mysore
Goan Tiatr
India-Armenia: Joint Issue

Personalities
Acharya Bodhihdharma & Efflorescence of Zen Culture
Acharya Konda Laxman Bapuji
Bhupesh Gupta
D. Devaraj Urs
Gaurishankar Govardhan Joshi
Jyoti Basu
Lala Thunthee Mull
M. Balamuralikrishna
O. P. Jindal
Raja Todarmal
Sant Pipaji Maharaj

Stamps from Approved List or BetterPhilately List issued in 2018
Central Plantation Crops Research Institute (ICAR)

Monday, January 15, 2018

Papua New Guinea - India Joint Stamp Issue


Update (15 Jan 2018): As many of you may have noticed, the joint issue between Papua New Guinea and India Post was hurriedly issued on 30th December 2017. Since the stamps were already printed, it looked like India Post went ahead and put them out for sale before end of the year. I've also learned that the Indian government printed stamps for Papua New Guinea Post as well, but as of 15th Jan all the stamps haven't arrived in Port Moresby yet and that's why not made available for purchase. Stamp designs that were first reported on BetterPhilately in November 2016 have not changed and are a good set for thematic collectors as well. I'm posting an image of the Indian version below as well.
Update on 17 Dec 2016: PNG Post has posted an update on its website rescheduling the release date for this joint stamp issue to 03rd April 2017. This happens to be exactly one year after the originally planned released for April 2016. See the links below for these updates.

PNG Post - http://www.postpng.com.pg/collections/view/india-papua-new-guinea-joint-stamps
New article - http://www.thenational.com.pg/india-png-to-release-stamp/

Update on 14 Dec 2016: This joint issue is likely postponed to 2017 or indefinitely. Papua New Guinea has taken off the stamps from its pending released for 2016 and India Post has obviously not confirmed the issue date so far. Stay tuned for more on this.

Update on 24 Nov 2016: Papua New Guinea will also release individual stamps for each bird. Denomination for the peacock stamp appears to be same (K1.45), but the Bird of Paradise stamp will likely be issued in two denominations (K6.60 and K10.00). Higher denomination stamp will be on the souvenir sheet and K6.60 denomination appears to be part of the stamp set.


Original Post: India and Papua New Guinea (PNG) are likely to issue a joint stamp issue in the next few weeks. This stamp issue was originally scheduled for release in late September, but has been delayed numerous times. This stamp issue was rescheduled for release on 22nd November, but has likely been postponed again. The new release date is not known yet.

Both the countries will commemorate their relationship on two stamps by depicting the National Birds of Papua New Guinea and India; Peacock and Bird of Paradise, respectively. Artwork for the souvenir sheet from PNG Post Office can be seen below. PNG Post will also release two stamps along with the souvenir sheet. Details from India Post are still awaited.
Papua New Guinea-India: Joint Issue
PNG Post Souvenir Sheet

United States 2017 Stamp Program (Archived)

Click on the images to and right click to save. Print quantities of 20 million or less are highlighted in yellow.

Update (15 Jan 2018): I've been remiss in updating this post for the last several months, but USPS does a good job in providing technical details in the Postal Bulletin so hopefully you've got most of the information from there. Details for all stamps and postal stationary from the last year are below. Three of the stamps issued in the latter half of 2017 were quite low in print run, and collectors may want to keep a few sheets/coils for future - Fr. Ted Hesburgh, National Museum of African American History & Culture and The History of Hockey. I will try to post 2018 details in another post within January. Enjoy.
 Update (10 Jun 2017): Here's an update for the second quarter of 2017. No new postal stationary was issued during the past three months.

Update (04 Mar 2017): Details for stamp issues in March 2017 are also available now. Two postal stationary items have been issued this year and design and print quantity for these two are also being shared below.
Update (18 Jan 2017): Here are details for stamps to be issued in Jan-Feb 2017. New information will be posted as it becomes available, likely in late February. Do check the other blog post for more regular updates and news on this year's stamp issues.
Note: Print quantities of stamp issues highlighted (yellow) are less than 20 Million.
Update (02 Oct 2016): So far, we've seen the release date for Ted Hesburgh stamp. It's supposedly going to be released on 01 Sep 2017. Let's wait and watch. Dates for no other stamps are yet known. We will be posting stamp subjects and relevant discussion in another blog post, but will share the stamp program at least once in a quarter starting Jan-Feb 2017.

Original post: USPS has announced quite a few stamp issues for 2017. More details coming soon!

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Sunday, December 3, 2017

India Post Stamp Subjects for 2017 (Jul-Dec 2017)

Update on 03 Dec 2017: I've waited a few days for India Post to share information for forthcoming stamp issues in December, but given their slowness, here's the update from November, including possible stamps that could be released in the last month of this year. 

The first stamp was issued on 01st November in Bengaluru to commemorate a Kannada poet, a Telugu poet and a temple in Andhra Pradesh. Even though, I was unable to establish any connection between the three stamps, the designs by Kamleshwar Singh were well planned (as always). Each stamp showed important facets of the subject. Members of Parliament from Karnataka dedicated the stamps, which were originally planned for issuance by a Federal Cabinet Minister (Ananth Kumar).

Then came a mega stamp issue, the largest set of stamps this year celebrating Indian food. The Prime Minister of India dedicated a miniature sheet containing 24 stamps showing popular Indian dishes on 03rd November at World Food India Conference in New Delhi. Foods shown on the stamps were randomly picked from all over the country and categorized in four groups. This mega stamp issue also consisted of four more miniature sheets (6 stamps each) and four sheetlets (24 stamps each). I've listed the dishes on the stamps below.
Two other stamps that were known before, Children's Day and Mahabharat were issued in November as well. Two stamps and two miniature sheets (each Rs 15) were issued on Nest theme to celebrate Children's Day. Honestly, these crowdsourced stamps have become excessive each year, and I wish this would be limited to one design and smaller denominations. The second mega stamp issue this past month was the one to commemorate another Indian epic, Mahabharat. Bharati Mirchandani designed three miniature sheets in collaboration with Santok Ba, Lakshmikanta Dash and Meena Mani. The stamps were dedicated at a conference on Bhagvad Gita in Kurukshetra by MoS Communications and Governor of Haryana on 27th November. If I can get clear images of the stamps, a blog dedicated to the Mahabharat and Ramayana stamps designs can be easily written for the readers.

As has been the trend over the last few months, several MyStamp sheetlets, consisting of two personalized sheetlets on Vaishno Devi Temple and Wedding wishes as well as two customized sheetlets on NBCC (India) Limited and Maluti Terracotta temples were released. The Vaishno Devi stamp was released by the Governor of Jammu & Kashmir in Jammu, the NBCC stamp by MoS Communications in New Delhi and the Maluti temples sheet by the President of India in Ranchi. Even though the customized sheetlets have been put on sale, the two personalized MyStamps have not been made available on ePostOffice at the time of writing this update. There has been some news about potential MyStamp sheetlets on Ananada Nilayam Vimana (Tirumala) and Sabarimala Temple, but these have not been confirmed.

Recent Stamp Issues
01 Nov - Adikavi Nannaya, Draksharamam Temple and Kavi Muddana
03 Nov - Indian Cuisine (24 designs)
08 Nov - MyStamp - Vaishno Devi Temple
14 Nov - Children's Day: Nest (2 designs)
15 Nov - MyStamp - Terracotta Temples of Heritage Village Maluti (Jharkhand Tourism)
15 Nov - MyStamp - NBCC (India) Limited
17 Nov - MyStamp - Wedding Wishes
27 Nov - Mahabharat (18 designs)

Forthcoming Stamp Issues
07 Dec - Indian Navy Submarine Arm (Golden Jubilee)
12 Dec - Gurishankar Govardhan Joshi 'Dhumketu'
18 Dec - Babu Banarsi Dass Gupta
28 Dec - Dr. Shivajirao G. Patwardhan 'Dajisaheb'
Dadabhai Naoroji
Dr. Shambhunath Singh
Goan Tiatr: 125th Anniversary (2 designs)
India-Papua New Guinea: Joint Issue (2 designs)
Indian Hand Fans (more than 16 designs)
Step Wells of India

Uncertain Stamp Issues
MyStamp - Indian Journal of Ophthalmology
MyStamp - Banaras Hindu University / Madan Mohan Malaviya
Pilatus Induction
Raja Todarmal

Update on 29 Oct 2017: First off, some updates for the next several weeks. India Post has yet to issue several stamps like Mahabahrat, Hand Fans, Step Wells, India-Papua New Guinea joint issue and other personalities and there are only two months left in the calendar year. The next two months could turn out to be quite expensive, so be prepared to shell out a few thousand bucks to keep the collections updated. In early November, India Post will issue stamps on Indian Cuisine, which appears to be a set of 24 designs. Let's see what foods make the cut and what designs are in store for the collectors. 

I've also gathered that another joint issue, this one with Armenia, could be released in December and possibly again on the theme of dances. If this comes true, it would be the sixth joint issue this year and the third on dances.

No jumbo stamp issues were released by India Post this month, and that could provide a breather to collectors before the last two months of the calendar year begin. Several of the best designed stamps of the year were released in October; all by Kamleshwar Singh. A stamp on the Silver Jubilee of the Rapid Action Force of the CRPF was issued in Meerut by the Home Minister of India on 07th October. A stamp was also issued to commemorate the centenary of the 3rd battalion of the Kumaon Regiment on the 23rd October. General Bipin Rawat of the Indian Army dedicated this stamp in Pithoragarh, the battalion's home base. 

One of the stamp that I had been requesting for issuance was on Nanaji Deshmukh. This stamp was finally issued by India Post on 11th October. The Prime Minister of India dedicated the stamp at a function held in New Delhi.

A beautiful set of two stamps was quietly put for sale to commemorate 70 years of diplomatic relations between India and Russia on 26th October. The stamps depict Bhavai and Beryozka folk dances; one from each country. Russia issued stamps in two designs on the same date, albeit in a different design. Kamleshwar Singh designed these stamps, as well as the ones on Rapid Action Force and 3 Kumaon (Rifles). All these three stamp issues are among the most intricately planned and created. Kudos to the designer for using this medium to truly miniaturize art work and showcase the theme to its full potential.

Two stamps were also dedicated in Mumbai to celebrate 75 years of operations at the Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport. Officials from India Post and the Mumbai Airport took part in the event held on 15th October. This was the same date when JRD Tata flew the first international flight in India from Karachi to Mumbai in 1932. This is when Air India or Tata Airlines was born. The stamps were unimpressive. I was expecting the stamps to show some history and the transition from a military base to the current world-class airport terminal, but instead the stamp designer chose to ignore the history and used glossy images supplied by the current operator to advertise the new terminal. Truly, a wasted opportunity.

Several MyStamp issues were also released over the last few weeks. The Governor of Jharkhand dedicated the MyStamp on Central Institute of Psychiatry in Ranchi. The MoS Communications did the same for the sheetlet on Indian Buildings Congress and the Home Minister of the state of Telangana released the MyStamp on Telangana Police. Given that India Post has settled on Rs 500 for each of these customized MyStamp sheetlets, the cost for collecting all MyStamps is quite exorbitant.

Recent Stamp Issues
07 Oct - Rapid Action Force (25 Years)
10 Oct - MyStamp - Central Institute of Psychiatry, Ranchi
11 Oct - Nanaji Deshmukh
15 Oct - Chharapati Shivaji International Airport, Mumbai (75 Years)
17 Oct - MyStamp - Indian Buildings Congress (Silver Jubilee)
21 Oct - MyStamp - Telangana Police (Police Commemoration Day)
23 Oct - 3 Kumaon (Rifles)
26 Oct - India-Russia: Joint Issue (Bhavai and Beryozka dances)

Forthcoming Stamp Issues
01 Nov - Adikavi Nannaya Bhatta, Draksharamam Temple and Kavi Muddana
03 Nov - Indian Cuisine
09 Nov - Dr. Shambhunath Singh
14 Nov - Children's Day (Theme: Nest)
07 Dec - Indian Navy Submarine Arm (Golden Jubilee)
12 Dec - Gurishankar Govardhan Joshi 'Dhumketu'
28 Dec - Dr. Shivajirao G. Patwardhan 'Dajisaheb'
Dadabhai Naoroji
Goan Tiatr (125th Anniversary)
India-Papua New Guinea: Joint Issue (2 designs)
Indian Hand Fans (more than 16 designs)
Mahabharat (18 designs)
Step Wells of India

Uncertain Stamp Issues
MyStamp - Indian Journal of Ophthalmology
MyStamp - Banaras Hindu University / Madan Mohan Malaviya
Pilatus Induction
Raja Todarmal

Update on 07 Oct 2017: Just a quick update on new India Post stamp issues in October. Several new stamps will be released in the next few weeks. Three of these were previously unannounced. A stamp will be issued on 07th October to commemorate 25 years of the Rapid Action Force, which is a specialized police force of the Central Reserve Police Force in India's Home Ministry. A stamp will also be issued on 23rd October on 100 years of 3 Kumaon (Rifles) regiment of the Indian Army.

A postal stamp will be issued on Nanaji Deshmukh on 11th October to celebrate completion of Nanaji's birth centenary. I've been asking for a stamp issue on this personality on Twitter for over a year now. Glad, it's finally approved.

A set of two stamps will also be issued 15th October to commemorate 75 Years of the International Airport in Mumbai. I've posted the stamp designs on BetterPhilately Twitter feed (see it here). The stamp designs are quite ordinary. Neither of the stamps depict the airport buildings in its entirety, and it's hard for me to believe that despite Kamleshwar Singh and Sankha Samanta being available as designers, but India Post keeps churning out some random stamp art. Let's see if the miniature sheet looks any better.

There will likely be other stamp issues in October, albeit unannounced.

Forthcoming Stamp Issues
07 Oct - Rapid Action Force (25 Years)
11 Oct - Nanaji Deshmukh
15 Oct - Chharapati Shivaji International Airport, Mumbai (75 Years)
23 Oct - 3 Kumaon (Rifles)
08 Nov - Raja Todarmal
14 Nov - Children's Day
07 Dec - Indian Navy Submarine Arm (Golden Jubilee)
12 Dec - Gurishankar Govardhan Joshi 'Dhumketu'
28 Dec - Dr. Shivajirao G. Patwardhan 'Dajisaheb'
Dadabhai Naoroji
Goan Tiatr (125th Anniversary)
India-Papua New Guinea: Joint Issue (2 designs)
India-Russia: Joint Issue
Indian Hand Fans (>16 designs)
Mahabharat (18 designs)
MyStamp - Indian Journal of Ophthalmology
MyStamp - Banaras Hindu University / Madan Mohan Malaviya
Pilatus Induction
Step Wells of India

Update on 01 Oct 2017: September turned out to be quite good with several new issues being dedicated and put for sale. The eagerly awaited stamp set on Ramayana (11 designs) was finally issued on 22nd September by the Prime Minister of India in Varanasi. India Post also sent the stamp set to more than 40 embassies around the world to sell the stamps to the Indian diaspora. Images of the stamps had been in circulation since June this year with several speculated release dates, but what came as a surprise was the issuance of the stamp set in two miniature sheets. The stamp set was printed in a sheet with green selvage and another one with a maroon background. India Post refers to the maroon one as a sheetlet, but that's an incorrect nomenclature. Anyways, the stamps were well  designed by Sankha Samanta and printed in ample quantity to reach all collectors.

Two joint issues were dedicated in the last month. I had wondered about this first during the last update. A joint stamp was dedicated on 12th September by the Prime Minister of India and the President of Belarus in New Delhi to celebrate the 25th anniversary of diplomatic ties between the two countries. Both countries issued one stamp with the same design showing the respective national symbols. The stamp design was quite ordinary, similar to what Belarus has been issuing all of 2017, showing national symbols. Given the similarity of other Belarus joint issues, it's safe to assume the stamp was designed in Belarus. India also issued a miniature sheet, designed by Kamleshwar Singh. It depicts the Lotus Temple (New Delhi) and the National Library of Belarus (Minsk). The stamp designer's creativity was clearly visible, and I wish he had designed the stamp as well. This could have easily been among the better designs this year.

The other joint issue was the much awaited one between Canada and India, which was issued on 21st September in New Delhi and Toronto. The two countries had decided in February 2017 to prepare a joint issue on Diwali and keeping the plan unchaged, two stamps, one design each from India and Canada were issued to celebrate the festival of lights. Alka Sharma designed the Indian version and Gerald Querubin of Entro Communications designed the stamp from Canada. What made this joint issue special was the issuance of the Siamese twin miniature sheet - Canada Post printed a souvenir sheet that contains one Indian stamp and a Canadian stamp. India Post had done a Siamese twin issue for the first time in 2015 with Singapore Post. Kudos to the philately team that planned this issue. The only gripe with this stamp set was the Indian design on Diwali. This is the third stamp on Diwali (2008, 2012 and 2017) and could have easily depicted something more stylized or another feature of the festival. Alka Sharma had designed one of the other Diwali stamps (joint issue with Israel in 2012) and there are striking similarities in the Canada joint issue as well. I truly wish Kamleshwar Singh or Sankha Samanta had got this project.

Several days after two MyStamps were quietly released in Tamil Nadu in early-September, I found out that these were part of a series of customized MyStamp sheetlets to celebrate Dr. MGR Birth Centenary. So far, four such sheetlets have been issued (Kancheepuarm, Tiruvallur, Vellore and Nagapattinam districts). I'm curious if the state administration ordered the pre-requisite 5000 for each event or if all the sheetlets were in one order. India Post also put two other MyStamp sheetlets (Mathura Refinery and Sringeri Math) on sale on ePostOffice, but no dedication ceremonies have been held so far.

In other news, the joint issue with Russia is now certain to be issued, either in 2017 or next year, with folk dances being the theme. It would be a nice change if India Post considers a larger variety of topics for these joint issues. Fellow collectors have suggested ideas like monuments, prominent political or sports leaders, famous cuisines etc. and we hope to see a change next time around. 

Recent Stamp Issues
03 Sep - MyStamp - Pazhaverkadu, Tiruvallur District (Dr. MGR Birth Centenary)
09 Sep - Vellore Fort (Dr. MGR Birth Centenary)
12 Sep - India-Belarus: Joint Issue - National Symbols
18 Sep - Vulnerable Birds
20 Sep - MyStamp - Nagapattinam District (Dr. MGR Birth Centenary)
21 Sep - India-Canada Joint Issue - Diwali
22 Sep - Ramayana (11 designs)
Sep - MyStamp - Mathura Refinery
Sep - MyStamp - Dakshinamanya Sri Sarada Peetham

Forthcoming Stamp Issues
08 Oct - Pilatus Induction
08 Nov - Raja Todarmal
14 Nov - Children's Day
07 Dec - Indian Navy Submarine Arm (Golden Jubilee)
12 Dec - Gurishankar Govardhan Joshi 'Dhumketu'
28 Dec - Dr. Shivajirao G. Patwardhan 'Dajisaheb'
Chharapati Shivaji International Airport, Mumbai (75 Years)
Dadabhai Naoroji
Goan Tiatr (125th Anniversary)
India-Papua New Guinea: Joint Issue
India-Russia: Joint Issue
MyStamp - Indian Journal of Ophthalmology
MyStamp - Banaras Hindu University / Madan Mohan Malaviya
Step Wells of India
Traditional Indian Hand Fans

Update on 10 Sep 2017: Even though India Post hasn't announced dates for any new stamp issues, I've added a few more possible stamp issues in 2017. The President of Belarus will be visiting India on a state visit on 11-12 Sep 2017. Could the India-Belarus joint issue be dedicated during his visit? Belarus Post has announced issuance of one stamp, but there is no update from India Post.

Forthcoming Stamp Issues
21 Sep - India-Canada: Joint Issue - Diwali
08 Oct - Pilatus Induction
08 Nov - Raja Todarmal
14 Nov - Children's Day
07 Dec - Indian Navy Submarine Arm (Golden Jubilee)
12 Dec - Gurishankar Govardhan Joshi 'Dhumketu'
28 Dec - Dr. Shivajirao G. Patwardhan 'Dajisaheb'
Birds: Vulnerable (Series 2)
Chharapati Shivaji International Airport, Mumbai (75 Years)
Dadabhai Naoroji
Goan Tiatr (125th Anniversary)
India-Belarus: Joint Issue
India-Papua New Guinea: Joint Issue
India-Russia: Joint Issue
MyStamp - Indian Journal of Ophthalmology
MyStamp - Banaras Hindu University / Madan Mohan Malaviya
Ramayana (11 designs)
Step Wells of India
Traditional Indian Hand Fans

Update on 02 Sep 2017: There were no new stamps issued by India Post in July, but there were three commemorative and two MyStamp sheetlets issued in August. The first set of stamps was issued by the President of India to commemorate 75 Years of Quit India Movement. This set of stamps comprised of 8 designs by Sankha Samanta. Personally, eight designs for this event appeared excessive and several images on the stamps were did not appear iconic or necessary. A small set of two stamps could have been enough. After a long hiatus, these stamps were printed at the security press in Nashik, but seemed to have grey tones where black ink should have been used.

India Post had organized a photography competition in July 2017 using the theme 'Beautiful India'. Three images were selected based on the entries received and issued as stamps in 2 designs along with a miniature sheet on 15th August, India's Independence Day. The stamps were quite ordinary with no specific mention of the locations or the photographers details. Other than the Taj Mahal on the miniature sheet, the two stamp designs can be easily mistaken for any other country.

The same day, on 15th August, India Post sprung a surprise with the issuance of stamps in 4 designs on Caves of Meghalaya. Suresh Kumar Achari designed these four stamps, which were issued as individual sheets of 45 stamps and as a miniature sheet as well. The stamps depict four caves of Meghalaya, but the stamp designs are quite hard to comprehend. It could be because photographs of the caves were used instead of paintings and printing quality of the Hyderabad security printing press is poor as well. The theme of these stamps was interesting, but better art direction and printing would have made these high quality products.

Other than these commemorative stamps, two MyStamp sheetlets were also issued. The first one was to celebrate 111 years of Indian Bank and the other one was to celebrate Kancheepuram District, Mahabalipuram Shore Temple and birth centenary of Dr. M. G. Ramachandran. The stamp on Indian Bank was dedicated at a ceremony in Chennai and the one on Kancheepuram was dedicated in Kilambakkam, near Chennai.

Towards the end of August, India Post just gave a vague update on several forthcoming stamp issues and these are listed below. Other than the date for India-Canada Joint Issue stamp on Diwali, no other stamp issue dates are known.

Update on 31 Aug 2017: It's been a couple months since this post was updated, but India Post appeared to be in a hiatus for several weeks in July-August as well. There was not much new information to share. Several new stamp issues are planned for issuance later this year. Here's a quick summary for stamps issued since July 2017. I will provide more details for each issue over the next few days in another update.

Recent Stamp Issues
09 August - 75 Years of 1942 Freedom Movement (Quit India Movement)
15 August - Beautiful India
15 August - Caves of Meghalaya
20 August - MyStamp - Indian Bank
30 August - MyStamp - Shore Temple, Mahabalipuram, Kancheepuram District (Land of Lakes)

Forthcoming Stamp Issues
21 September - India-Canada: Joint Issue - Diwali
Birds: Vulnerable (Series 2)
Chharapati Shivaji International Airport, Mumbai (75 Years)
India-Belarus: Joint Issue
India-Papua New Guinea: Joint Issue
Indian Hand Fans
MyStamp - Indian Journal of Ophthalmology
MyStamp - Banaras Hindu University / Madan Mohan Malaviya
Ramayana (11 designs)
Step Wells of India

Update on 01 Jul 2017: This post will provide updates for India Post stamp issues from July to December 2017. News and information for the first six months can be found here.

Forthcoming Stamp Issues
India-Papua New Guinea: Joint Issue
Ramayana (11 designs)
MyStamp - Indian Journal of Ophthalmology
MyStamp - Banaras Hindu University / Madan Mohan Malaviya

Stamps Approved for Issuance
Aquaculture
Birds: Endangered & Critically Endangered
Boats of India
Bridal Costumes of India
Central Plantation Crops Research Institute (ICAR)
Four Dhamas (Are these Char Dhams?)
Fragrant Stamps (Chocolate, Strawberry)
Goan Tiatr
Historical Gates of Indian Forts
Holiday Destinations
India’s Participation in World War I
India-Armenia: Joint Issue
Indian Fashion Industry
Indian Perfume
Jataka Tales
Mangalyan
Mehandi (Lawsona inermis)
Minerals of India (Innovative)
Musical Instruments (Chimta, Dotara, Ektara, Khartal, Tumbi)
Palace of Wheels
Pilatus Induction
Puppets
Shaktipeeth Temples (Kalighat, Kamkhya, Meenakshi, Vaishno Devi)
Solar System
Terracotta Temples of India
Traditional Embroideries of India (Innovative)
Tribes of India
UNESCO Heritage Sites
University of Mysore
Wildlife – Flora & Fauna

Acharya Bodhihdharma & Efflorescence of Zen Culture
Acharya Konda Laxman Bapuji
Bhupesh Gupta
D. Devaraj Urs
Gaurishankar Govardhan Joshi
Jyoti Basu
Lala Thunthee Mull
M. Balamuralikrishna
O. P. Jindal
Raja Todarmal
Sant Pipaji Maharaj

BetterPhilately Wish List
Amritlal Nagar
B. D. Jatti
Balasaheb Thackarey
Balasheb Deoras
Chinmayananda Saraswati (1916-1993)
Dr. Muthulakshmi Reddy
Eknath Ranade
Gopal Swarup Pathak
I. K. Gujral
J. Jayalalithaa
K. R. Narayanan
Khushabhau Thakre (1922-2003)
Mohammad Hidayatullah
N. Sanjeeva Reddy
P. V. Narasimha Rao
Shivmangal Singh Suman
Siyaram Sharan Gupt
Swami Abhedananda
V. P. Singh

100 Years of Kheda Movement
Auroville (Golden Jubilee)
Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute
Bishop Cotton School, Bengaluru
Bombay Scottish School, Mumbai
Dayalbagh
Gir Wildlife Sanctuary
Human Organ Donation Awareness Programme
Lions International Centenary
Presidency University, Kolkata

Stamps Issued from the Approved List
350th Anniversary of Guru Gobind Singh
India-Portugal: Joint Issue
Samrat Vikarmaditya
Headgears of India
Beetles of India
Yogoda Satsanga Society of India
The Poona Horse
Means of Transport through Ages
Republic Day (Nature India)
Deekshabhoomi of Dr. B. R. Ambedkar
Eminent Writers: Krishan Chander, Balwant Gargi, Kummari Molla, K V Puttappa, Bhisham Sahni, Viswanatha Satyanarayana, Srilal Sukla, Tarigonda Vengamamba
Srimad Ramanujacharya
Jhala Manna
Srimad Rajchandra
Fragrant Stamp (Coffee)
Banaras Hindu University
1942 Freedom Movement
Caves of Meghalaya
Independence Day - Beautiful India (Photography Contest)
India-Belarus: Joint Issue
Vulnerable Birds
India-Canada: Joint Issue
Ramayana
India-Russia: Joint Issue
Kavi Muddana
Nannaya Bhatta & Draksharamam Temple
Indian Cuisine
Children’s Day
Mahabharat
Dr. Shivajirao G. Patwardhan
Step Wells of India (Rani ki Vav, Agrasen Baoli, Chand Baoli, Adalaj ni Vav, etc.)
Dr. Mehr Chand Mahajan
India-Papua New Guinea: Joint Issue
Traditional Hand Fans

Stamps Issued from BetterPhilately Wish List
M. G. Ramachandran (Birth Centenary)
Montfort Anglo-Indian Higher Secondary School, Yercaud
100 Years of Champaran Movement
Nanaji Deshmukh
Submarine Arm of Indian Navy (Golden Jubilee)