Was Post System a British Invention?
Parliamentary democracy and education being British inventions is a myth. Thanks to those who looked at our history through English and Moghul glasses, the mental slavery continues even today. There are many who think every good thing came from the English. and that the British colonial rulers introduced the Postal Department in India.
The Indian postal department (it used to be called Post and Telegraph Department till fax and email killed telegrams) has grown into the world’s biggest and carried the largest number of letters (despite legendary delays and the Bihari postman who gathered letters from many letter boxes and emptied his bag into a manhole to go home and sleep).
It was early in 1672 that King Chikka (meaning younger) Deveraya Wodeyar had organised a postal service throughout his kingdom.
The headquarters was Mysuru where Indian democracy was also born Chika Deveraya had organised a postal system in Mysuru that delivered letters and intelligence of city developments to the king to make him aware of the events in his kingdom. It was a well-advanced postal system during those days before the ‘invention’ by the British. It was modernised later by Tippoo Sultan of Mysuru.
Those were the days when kings used to go into the people disguised or incognito to know their problems and feelings. A remark by a washerman, heard during one such attempt, led to the ‘trial by fire’ of Seeta and her being exiled by Lord Ram.
The Post department is now threatened with extinction as most companies and even common people use ‘couriers’. In many places people even do not know where the Post Office of their area is located!
The courier service too is not a modern idea that came from the West. There were, long before the couriers came, ‘Anghadias’ in Gujarat who used to pick up mail or money from Gujarat towns and deliver them to merchants in Bombay. Gujarat has old links with that metro as a part of bilingual Bombay state.
The Anghadia was known to be so reliable that a receipt from him was equal to that from the recipient as he would even risk his life to complete the job. The service, which became a hereditary occupation, was very common in most towns in that state. It even became a family name in some areas of Saurashtra region.
These traditional mailmen faced prosecution then as the British government and its successor ruled that Post was a monopoly of the Government. The persecution stopped when an English name, Courier, was given to the service. That is how our slavish mindset worked!
The mental slavery continues even today. Many think every good things came from the English.