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| Last Updated:: 31/01/2018

Pune GPO to Bring Cave Heritage on City’s Postal Covers










Pune's General Post Office (GPO) is all set to launch special postal covers based on the theme of the caves in and around the city. The covers will be sharing one cave each month and brief information about it will be communicated. The first in the list is the Bhaje caves located near Lonavala. 



Speaking to Mirror, postmaster general Ganesh Sawaleshwarkar said, "The idea behind coming up with a special cover is to bring to the forefront issues that are not much talked about. Generally, the purpose of such acover launched by the post office is to commemorate an event, occasion or culture. We cannot release postage stamps on everything, so we release special covers on those that can't be featured on postage stamps. This year, the theme that we have come up with is the caves in and around Pune. Such stamps, tickets and special covers create a lot of curiosity and then people try to gather more information on the subject. We have not yet decided on the caves we will be covering this year. There are around 50 caves around Pune and many of them are not known to people. These covers will create a curiosity about them." 



A ceremony to launch the covers will be conducted, wherein an expert will be communicating the details about the caves around Pune and how many of them are not known to the common public. Kaustubh Mudgal, an enthusiastic philatelist, sharing his opinion on the move, said, "I think it's quite a positive initiative and can in fact help redevelop the interest of people in subjects that are brought forward through the postal covers. I feel the caves which people rarely know about will finally become a subject of interest. They will visit these caves and try to find more information about them through the internet." 



Speaking to Mirror, city-based archaeologist Saili Palande-Datar said, "This is indeed a welcome move by the postmaster general to acknowledge our rich cultural heritage. Releasing such first covers with the theme of historical/ heritage caves of Pune district will sensitise the general public about their existence and contribution to the history of India. It would help develop the right historical perspective and appreciation of the art and architecture of unique rock-cut structures.



Maharashtra houses more than 1,000 caves which is largest number in India due to the availability of basaltic Deccan trap. The Bhaje caves are the oldest datable caves in the state and one of the oldest in India, dating back to the 2nd century BC. The study of the Bhaje caves not only help us understand development of Buddhism, but also comprehend royal connections of Satvahana and Kashatrapas dynasties, apart from Indo- Roman trade linkages. I had the privilege to contribute to the development of the concept of the cave series, selection of caves, the content on the cover and visual photographs."









Source: Pune Mirror