Monthly e-Stamp Bulletin edited and published by Jeevan Jyoti from Dehradun.

Saturday, November 5, 2016

Rainbow November 2016

It is festival time !

Singapore Post issued a new set of stamps featuring the four major festivals on October 18, 2016. .It comprises eight designs in two denominations: 1st local and 70 cents. The four festivals – Chinese New Year, Hari Raya Aidilfitri, Deepavali and Christmas – each gets two stamps with different graphic designs.

Dehradun   November  2016    Vol. IX No. 107

Readers are requested to send reports of philatelic activities in their area for publication. Short write ups by the readers about their journals, societies, publications and philatelic requirements can be sent for inclusion in this bulletin to   and by post to –

Ms. Jeevan Jyoti, c / o Mr. Ajay Srivastav, Wildlife Institute of India, Chandrabani, Dehradun – 248002. India

Note- This bulletin is only for circulation among a limited group of philatelists without any commercial purpose. The bulletin will be sent to the readers only on request. Those who wish to receive it regularly please reply giving the name of your city / country with the subject SUBSCRIBE RAINBOW

Dear Reader

While releasing November 2016 issue of Rainbow Stamp News, I express my heartfelt condolences on sad demise of renowned philatelist Shri Yogesh Kumar. It is a great loss to the Indian Philately. We recently lost three well known philatelic personalities from Uttar Pradesh….Shri Satish Mishra from Bareilly, Dr  SP Gupta from Meerut  and now Shri Yogesh Kumar. May their soul rest in peace. Both Dr Gupta and Shri Y. Kumar had left a milestone of great philatelic work and research behind them for the generations to come and see….Their loss can never be filled……Philatelic Tributes to great souls from Rainbow Stamp News !!

In this issue I am extremely pleased to publish 100th article of distinguished philatelist and author, Dr Satyenra Kumar Agrawal. I thank Dr Agrawal for his great contribution to  Rainbow and  giving special colors to this newsletter . I am sure he will continue to give philatelic treat to the Readers every month through his wonderful articles !!

This is all for this month…More in Next Issue…

                                                                    -   Jeevan Jyoti


§  From the Desk of Naresh Agrawal
§  Recent Indian Issues
§  In The News
§  Reader’s Right
§  Doon Philatelic Diary
§  Beginners’ Section
§  Specialized Section 
§  New Issues from Other Countries
§  Philatelic Clubs and Society
§  Blogs & Websites on Philately
§  Current Philatelic Magazines – Newsletter
§  Promotional Section


Well, I am happy that at least one person has put his efforts to pen down his valued views, opinions and suggestions on my worry about  philatelic treasure left after a philatelists death and duly endorsed my views.  My thanks to Mr. Srinivasan.  I do understand many of the readers must have had serious concern on this matter but somehow they have not given their comments. But I appeal to them to come out and speak on the subject and give their valued  views openly. One must keep in mind that systems are developed when all people concerned raise their voice, show their concern, put their effort, speak on what they think and have in mind & above all come out of their shells and become a part of the change..the change of a system or in case there is  no system then  to bring out a new system.

 I also understand  that this is a matter of worry for the philatelists as well as his family members.  I don’t find anywhere in world any proper system of preserving such treasure and to have  its proper financial  recovery by sale and also the gems to go in proper hands. I think every philatelist is required to keep his family member appraised of what philatelic assets he has or what may be done in case of his death. One must understand some of the assets are remained unsold because the family members having wrong impression about valuation of those assets as they  feel the assets to be of very  high value. But in some cases it is the other way round. Some extremely rare items remain unknown and are quite undervalued.

Mr. Srinivasan has very rightly written that there should be one VIRTUAL BANK  as virtual details of any philatelist’s philatelic  assets may be preserved and those details might help in valuation and also for disposing off of the material at appropriate price and to appropriate / deserving person. I feel at first stage, local /regional  virtual banks can be formed. Local clubs and societies can help to build and establish such banks. I understand some cyber person / team  can be engaged for doing this job.

Further, there is a need to promote the practice of sharing of  views and display material amongst the philatelists. I personally feel sharing what philatelic treasure you posses will not harm you in any way. It will certainly help in protection and appropriate disposal and clearance to the left after material / treasure. Local clubs and societies can certainly help in big way.

Mr.  Srinivasan perhaps did not give much attention to the treasure of experience, knowledge and information one possess which goes with the person concerned.  As I have already said, there may be good possibility of making some recovery from  physical treasure but what about mental  treasure? It will go and go for ever, if not preserved. Our philatelic Nodal agencies like PCI ,FIAP  should look in to this direction. They should develop system to promote philatelic writing at grass root level. They should honor philatelic writers on regular basis at different levels so that habit of philatelic writing is promoted. There is of course, literature class in philatelic competitions which has helped a lot but only a few philatelists  have come in to its fold. There is great need to  encourage every philatelist to write whatever is felt, experienced by him. There is a need to have some agency to keep record of the writings. From these small writings and studies one can find good hidden facts of philatelic and social history. I suggest even at Distt Level shows, philatelic writing / literature class should be introduced. Preparing your own material bank should also be introduced which will  help in this direction and help others to know about what one possesses.

There are good number of stamp collectors who are practically unknown. They are not member of any club or society. They don’t participate in any philatelic show. They remain aloof and alone with their stamps. Identifying such persons  and motivating them is very essential. In such cases  no one approaches  anybody for disposal of material left by such person.  Anyway, in case no one approaches nodal agency like PCI for valuation of left after assets, agency can approach the heirs, if it comes to know about such case. This is moral  duty of the fellow philatelists / local clubs to inform the agency about the same. This will be a right move. Here it is important that all the stamp collector/ philatelists should get themselves registered or become member of any recognized club/society . Or there may a undertaking given by the registered or the willing member to get the philatelic assets valued in case any mishap occurred. Requisite payments may be made in advance.

Hence, I feel this important aspect of philately needs to be looked upon carefully. I again appeal readers to give their views and opinions. Please also share your experiences or case studies.
Looking forward.

Naresh Agrawal

Recent Indian Issues   

2 October 2016 -  Swachh Bharat – Rs 5
4 October 2016 - Central Water & Power Research Station – Rs 5
6 October 2016 -  Induction of Lockheed Martin C-130J-30 Hercules Aircraft in to Indian Air Force – Rs 5
17 October 2016 – Birds Near Threatened – Rs 5 + Rs10 + Rs !5 + Rs 25 + MS
24 October 2016 – Banaras City – Rs 5
31 October 2016 – National Unity Day – Rs 10
1 November 2016 -  50th Anniversary of Haryana – Rs 5

Recent Special Covers

1 October 2016 : Naturepex 2016 , Bhubaneshwar ( painting on nature made by a student Santosh Naik )
1October 2016 : Naturepex 2016 , Bhubaneshwar ( Horse Carried Cover)
2 October 2016 : Naturepex 2016,  Bhubaneshwar (Mahatma Gandhi)
19 October 2016 : Bhairondan Sethia, Bikaner

 In The News

Renowned philatelist Y. Kumar is no more……

Noted philatelist Shri Yogesh Kumar of Bareilly passed away on 3rd November 2016. He was President-elect of the Philatelic Congress of India and an International Jury. He was a renowned Postal Historian . Our heartfelt condolences to all his family members.

Our deepest condolences….

It's sad news. I have lost a friend. May his soul rest in peace.

-Dipok Dey  Kolkata

Very sad to know, about the demise of Shri Yogesh Kumar ji. A very Senior philatelist of India, president elect of PCI, A very renowned philatelist  and an internationally  well known person in philatelic world.

A big loss to Indian philately. We lost a really good friend of mine and all Philatelists.A very big loss to philatelic world indeed.

His milestone work on Jaipur State cancellation opened a new area of research and display in field of feudatory States Postal History. His regular advice on many common subject of interest will always be missed. His association with philatelists of the country was special and he always accepted requests for judging exhibitions without any hassle.

May God give rest to the departed soul and give courage to family members to face this unbearable loss.

-Ajay Kr. Mittal, New Delhi

Very shocking news.....Know him since 1984 when I first participated in UPHILEX 84, UP State Philatelic Exhibition, Lucknow.....I fondly remember him ….He won the best exhibit award in senior category with Governor’s Rolling Trophy and I won the best exhibit award in Junior category…That was my first interaction with him….After that had a long association with him ... Used to receive his email and sometime phone call also. Seems unbelievable to me.....Feeling very sad…. .Indian Philately has lost a great philatelist…and a very nice person.

-Jeevan Jyoti, Dehradun

It is really shocking and very sad to know about the demise of Shri Yogesh Kumar of Bareilly who was a thorough gentleman, a veteran philatelist of India having command and expertise on various subjects of philately especially Jaipur State Postal History, President  Elect of PCI, a philatelic Jury, a good friend to philatelists   and  a well known philatelist in the philatelic world.Truly a big loss to philately. My sincere condolences. I pray the departed soul to rest in peace and strength to his family to bear this irreparable loss.

-Naresh Agrawal, Bilaspur (C.G.)

RIP, Yogeshbhai.
Entire Indian Philately family will miss you.
-Umesh Kakkeri – Mumbai

Great loss to Indian philately. To me he was like an elder brother. Ever since I met him in 1984 at UPHILEX -84, he has been a guide for me in philately. I would say it is untimely departure of this great soul. May his soul rest in peace.

-Dinesh Sharma, Lucknow

 My heartfelt condolences to his family in these difficult time. May his soul rest in peace.

-Sandeep Jaiswal,USA

He was great Philatelist. May God rest his soul in peace.
-Sudhir Jain – Satna (MP)

RIP dear friend…
-Col Jayanta Dutta,Pune

Our deepest condolences. May his soul rest in peace.
-Prashant Pandya, Vadodara

PHILATAIPEI 2016 : World Stamp Championship Exhibition


PHILATAIPEI 2016 world Stamp Championship Exhibition was held  at Taipei World Trade Centre, Taipei, Taiwan to commemorate the 120th anniversary of the Chunghwa Post from October 21 to 26. 2400 frames were displayed in the exhibition.. There were 12 exhibits from India. Anil Suri was the National Commissioner and Mr A R Singhee was the member of the Jury from India.

 Results of Indian Participants at TAIPEI 2016

Dr KS Mohan, Pradip Jain. Rajan Jayakar, Anil Suri, Subrajyoti Behera

Congratulations to all Winners !

1. KS Mohan - Postal History of Cochin - Large Vermeil

2. Pradip Jain - Mahatma Gandhi- A life in service of humanity - Vermeil

3. Rajan Jayakar - Fiscals of British India Judicial and Non Judicial Issues (1800-1900-           Vermeil

4 .Angeet Suri - Fiscals of Jodhpur -  Large Vermeil

5.  Anil Suri - Fiscals of Mysore - Large Vermeil

6.  Abhishek S. - Winged Beauties - Bronze

7.  Muskan Malhotra - The Elephant Worlds - Bronze

8.  Raghav Jhunjhunwala - World of Cricket - Silver

9.  Subhrajyoti Behera - Wonders of Nature - Conserve it or lose it - Large Silver

10.  Rohit Prasad - India 1929 Air Mail Stamps - A study of constant varieties - Silver

11.  SC Sukhani - Handstruck Postage Stamps of Calcutta - 78 Points

Courtesy - Madhukar Jhingan -
 Stamps of India 

 Shri Ashok Kumar Bayanwala nominated for Roake Trophy of India Study Circle for Philately (UK).

Eminent philatelist of Ahmedabad and Postal Historian of Modern Indian Philately, Shri Ashok Kumar Bayanwala has been nominated by India Study Circle for Philately (UK) for his contributions to ‘India Post’ for the award of the Roake Trophy for this year. The trophy will be presented at the Annual General Meeting of ISC in London on 5th November 2016. Shri Bayanwala has been awarded Roake Trophy for the second time. Earlier in 1993 he was awarded with Roake Trophy.

Fish skin stamp released by Faroe Islands Post

Faroe Islands Post has issued Fish skin stamps – Incredibly beautiful and patterned with almost metallic colour tones.These beautiful stamps are with skin of cod caught in Faroese waters, supplied by fish exporter Nevið in Runavík, tanned by Atlantic Leather in Iceland and printed by Cartor in France.
The Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) is usually about one meter in length, but can grow to 2 meters and weigh up to 96 kilos. It can reach an age of 25 years and is found on both sides of the Atlantic, from Novaya Zemlya in the Barent Sea, Spitsbergen and Jan Mayen down to the Bay of Biscay, in the North Sea and the Baltic Sea to the east. It is commonly found in the waters around the Faroe Islands and Iceland, as well as Greenland – and from Labrador in the north to North Carolina in the south.
Cod is generally sandy brown, its back and sides are yellowish-green, with grey or brown spots and a white lateral stripe running along its sides. The belly is white or greyish-white. However, it can have other colour variations depending on habitat, f. ex. dark brown or maroon if it lives among kelp.
Cod is popular for its delicate flesh. This is especially true of Faroese cod, which is fatter and not as mealy or dry as cod in other places.

 Chinese stamps entered Guinness book

 A new philatelic record recognized worldwide has been recently set: a collection of 1,606 stamps featuring the Chinese chrysanthemum has been officially recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records for containing the most stamps in a single series.

A representative of Guinness World Records made the announcement on 18th October 2016 at the annual chrysanthemum festival in central China’s Kaifeng in Henan Province, where cultivation of chrysanthemums has a history of more than 1,000 years.
First released by China Post Group in 2012, the collection features 1,606 types of chrysanthemum flowers grown in the city. The flowers were depicted in a traditional Chinese painting style.
It took the group four more years to release all eight sets in the collection. Copies of the collection will be sold for 1,606 yuan (around US$238).
It was not the first time a world record has been set at the chrysanthemum festival. In 2015, a “full-standing multiflorous chrysanthemum” grafted in Kaifeng earned its place in the Guinness Book of World Records for containing the greatest number of chrysanthemum species.
Monday marked the beginning of the 34th anniversary of the chrysanthemum festival. More than 2.6 million potted chrysanthemums are on display across the city, drawing tourists from around the country.
The chrysanthemum indicates nobleness, dignity and longevity in Chinese culture, making it one of the most popular plants in the country.
Recent Stamp Exhibitions
SIPA Diamond 2016, Diamond Jubilee Stamp Exhibition 

25th - 27th November 2016

South India Philatelists' Association will be organizing Diamond Jubilee Stamp Exhibition from 25th to 27th November 2016 at Chennai.

St. Bede's Centenary Auditorium,
No. 37, Santhome High Road,
Santhome, Mylapore, Chennai - 600 004.
For more information contact: Phone : +91-44-32001626, 32914769,
Mobile : +919840645487, +919444491111


BANDUNG 2017 Specialised WORLD STAMP EXHIBITION, 3-7 Aug 2017 Exhibition under FIP Patronage

Shri Sahdeva Sahoo has been appointed National Commissioner for this exhibition. Intending participants are requested to contact Shri Sahoo for forms .

Prof. Sahadeva Sahoo
"Saswat", D-3, B. J. B. Nagar
Bhubaneswar 751014 (India)

Phones +91 9337103542 (mobile)
 +91 674 2432251 (land line)

emails :

Exhibition Name
Trans Studio Convention Center, Bandung, INDONESIA
3rd - 7th August 2017
Specialised World
Competitive classes
Traditional Philately
Postal History
Postal Stationery
Thematic Philately
Youth Philately
Philatelic Literature
One-Frame Exhibit
Modern Philately
Total frames
Ca  2 200
Frame fee
US $75
Frame fee for Youth Class (per exhibit)
Frame fee for One-Frame exhibit
US $100
Frame fee for Literature Class (per exhibit)
US $ 85
Frame fee for Modern Philately
US $75
Deadline Entries
30 November 2016
Deadline Acceptance
25 January 2017
Deadline Payment
31 March 2017
Mr Michael Ho
General Commissioner
MrTono Dwi Putranto


MELBOURNE 2017, 34th FIAP Asian International Stamp Exhibition will be held in Melbourne, Australia from 30 March to 2 April 2017.
Mr. Madhukar Jhingan is the Indian National Commissioner for the MELBOURNE 2017.
MELBOURNE 2017 will have following classes:
FIAP Championship Class, Traditional, Postal History, Postal Stationery, Aerophilately, Astrophilately,  Thematic, Maximaphily, Revenue, Open, Youth, Literature, One Frame and Modern Philately (1980 onwards).
The Entry Fee for One-Frame Exhibit is US$80, and for Literature the Fee is US$55 per exhibit. The participation is free for Youth Class. The Entry Fee for all other classes is US$55 per frame.
The Entry Forms are now available for download
Those interested in participating may please contact Mr. Madhukar Jhingan, National Commissioner for India of MELBOURNE 2017.
(M) +919811160965, Email:

CHINA 2016 - 33th Asian International Stamp Exhibition

 CHINA 2016 will be held at Nanning International Convention and Exhibition Center, Nanning City, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, China from December 2 - 6,  2016.

CHINA 2016 (33th Asian International Stamp Exhibition) will be organized under the Patronage of the Federation of Inter-Asian Philately (FIAP) and Recognition of the Fédération Internationale de Philatélie (FIP).Mr Surajit Gongvatana is the FIAP Co-ordinator of CHINA 2016

This exhibition is organized by the All-China Philatelic Federation, jointly with the State Post Bureau of The People’s Republic of China, The People’s Government of Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region and China Post Group. 

 Mr.Surendra A. Kotadia is National Commissioner for CHINA - 2016 from India. His contact details are as below.
TELIPHONE  + 91 22 22024130/31    MOBILE  + 91 98199 03789
 FAX                + 91 22 22843275  E-MAIL :

Reader’s Right


The Indian philatelic community has certainly lost two of its stalwarts in Mr. Satish Misra & Dr. S. K. Gupta who departed for the heavenly abode in the last few months. 

I found the article by Mr Naresh Agarwal to be quite touching, but also scary. A philatelist invests a tremendous amount of time & money in building a collection that lasts through his lifetime. Imagine the value of such a treasure? It would be the most naive & nonsensical thing to do if the philatelic asset is disposed off at a pittance, whatsoever the reason. The damage is collateral as not just the legal heirs of the diseased who lose out on a possible fortune, but also the philatelic fraternity that would not even get a chance to know what or how much was at stake. Having said that, I think all assets of a person (including stamps) will automatically be inherited by his/her legal heir(s), unless there is a will executed by the diseased that states otherwise. Then, all "valuables" are at the mercy of the spouse/children who are free to exercise their right in "disposing" it. So, there is nothing much we can do about it. 

Taking this incident as a cue, may be we must start thinking. I would second the ideas suggested by Naresh of possible valuation of philatelic assets. May be such a feature be incorporated into nodal agencies like PCI & FIAP. I checked that FIAP website already has an expertization service. An expert committee may be created comprising senior & renowned philatelists to deal with valuation on a price-based model. Secondly, any philatelist should consider including his philatelic assets in a will should a need arise to execute the latter. Thirdly, may be create some kind of a "virtual bank" where all philatelic materials of willing donors be held and sold in the free markets, the proceeds from sale of which can be utilized for charity and/or development of philately in that country/region. 

I would like to leave this discussion for continuity with my fellow philatelists. I am sure if we act in a concerted manner, something tangible might happen. On a concluding note, I would like to thank the organizers of Naturepex 2016 for holding such a remarkably successful event! It was my first ever exhibit & I am glad to have won gold as well as the best exhibit award in thematic philately. Special thanks to Prashant Pandya for sponsoring a lovely commemorative plaque on behalf of the Baroda Philatelic Society.

Wishing all the viewers of Rainbow blog a wonderful Deepavali & happy new year 2017 in advance.

-Srinivasan Anantharaman – Hyderabad : email :

Doon Philatelic Diary

National Institute for Visually Handicapped (NIVH, Dehradun)

-Abhai Mishra

The history of the institute can be traced back to the second world war when in 1943, the then British Government established St. Dunstan's Hostel for war blinded. It was set up to rehabilitate second world war wounded blind soldiers and sailors. The first commandant of the Institute was Sir Clutha Mackenzie. After independence, the Ministry of Education was made responsible for the welfare of the blind in year 1950. A training centre for the blind was opened in the same year. In 1951, the Government established Central Braille Press; in 1952, Workshop for the manufacturing of Braille Appliances; in 1954, Sheltered Workshop; in 1975 Training Centre for the Adult Blind Women and in 1959, Model School for the Visually Handicapped. In 1963, National Library for the Print Handicapped was established out of which National Talking Book Library was carved out in the year 1990. On integration of all the Units in 1967, the Government established National Centre for the Blind (NCB). This Centre was further upgraded as National Institute for the Visually Handicapped in the year 1979 and finally in October 1982, it was registered under the Societies Registration Act, 1860 and gained the status of an Autonomous Body.

The Central Braille Press at NIVH, Dehradun is one of the earliest Braille Press in Asia and first of its kind in India. Today it is the largest producer of Braille text books in the country. Not only in English but other language books are also printed including Hindi and Sanskrit. It also brings weekly and monthly magazines for the visually challenged readers. On 30 November 1994 a stamp was issued to commemorate the centenary of the Calcutta Blind School. The information sheet of this stamp was printed in Central Braille Press, NIVH, Dehradun in Braille script. This was the world first Braille information sheet. This has been included in the Limca Book of World Records. Again on 02 January 2008, to commemorate the birth bi-centenary of Louis Braille, the world first Hindi inscribed stamp booklet in Braille was printed at the very same press.

- Abhai Mishra : email :

Now NIVH is called Now  NIEPVI   'National Institute for the Empowerment of Persons with Visual Impairment ( divyangjan) '

National Library for the Print Handicapped

Courtesy – Dr Geetika Mathur - NIVH,Dehradun

Beginners’ Section


If you want to mail a Diwali Greeting card, New Year Card, birthday card, party invitation or thank you note, why not send a Potato Greeting Card by “Potato Parcel” mail, instead? Yes, that's right. A potato. It is not only Eco friendly but delicious too when cooked.
Sending Potato with greeting massage by parcel is an innovative and amazing idea flourished in the head of a young Texas entrepreneur Alex Craig whose girlfriend first called it "the stupidest idea" she'd ever heard of, but he is now making good money mailing people potatoes inscribed with special messages and makes $10,000 a month sending potatoes in the mail since the business launched in May 2015. He has sold more than 3,000 spuds in just four months.

To order, he launched a website   that allows you to send a message to friends or foes via a potato for $9.99.
Along with massage you also can send images, your face, a friends face, or the face of a celebrity on a potato to anyone you know for which you have to upload the picture.
Craig says "I wanted to change the way we communicated with each other in a brand new way by allowing people to send an anonymous message ... on a potato, though there are so many apps and new technologies that are trying to revolutionize communication but I wanted to do it in a much simpler way."
The business has expanded to the UK, Canada, and Australia and may become global in future. A crop of copycats—including ‘Mystery Potato’, ‘Mail a Spud’, and ‘Potato in the Post’—has also sprung up since the launch of Potato Parcel.

Courtesy -  Facts-Philately-Enjoyment Digest  

Specialized Section

In this section I am pleased to publish 100th article of Dr Satyendra Kr Agrawal . Many Congratulations to Dr Agrawal on completing a century. I thank Dr Agrawal for giving 100 different color shades to Rainbow Stamp News through his wonderful articles and hope this journey will be continued in the years to come !! - Editor


My 100th article for Rainbow Stamp News

© Dr.Satyendra Kumar Agrawal

A symbol of the Divine, a good luck charm, a Cosmogram of the world order, a template for Fengshui ―through the ages, the “Lo Shu” - the first known  magic square of order three, has fascinated people of many different cultures.The early history of Magic Squares is not well researched neither documented. However, there is a general view that three civilizations have contributed to its creation: the Chinese, the Indian and the Arab.

Magic squares were known to Chinese mathematicians as early as 650 BC, and explicitly given since 570 AD. In India its first known appearance is in the first century, designed by the Buddhist Philosopher Nagarjuna, who lived about the Second Century, presented severalMagic Squares of Order 4   in his work Kaksaputa. It took more than 1000 years to find a Jain Inscription that showed, again, an Order 4 Magic Square, although with special properties not yet present in the works of his predecessor. This kind of Magic Squares was named lately Jain Magic Squares. However, it is due to the Mathematician Narayana Pundit a systematic study of Magic Squares that, in his work Ganita Kaumudi (1356), presented general methods for the construction of several sorts.

It was probably the India that passed the concept to the Arabs, who conquered large parts of it in the seventh century. An encyclopaedia, “Rasa'il Ihkwan al-Safa” ; published in Baghdad in circa 983 AD, contained magic squares of order five and six.The Arabs used the squares to help them make astrological calculations and predictions.Around 1200, Ahmad al-Buni, a famous Arab Mathematician, also studied Magic Squares. He believed in their mystical properties. It is from the Arabs that the squares spread to the West.

Chinese emperors, Babylonian astrologer-priests, prehistoric cave people in France, and ancient Mayans of the Yucatan were convinced that magic squares-arrays filled with numbers or letter in certain arrangements-held the secret of the universe. Since the dawn of civilization, humans have invoked such patterns to ward off evil and bring good fortune. 

Chinese literature dating from as early as 650 BC tells the legend of Lo Shu or "scroll of the river Lo" according to which, 4,000 years ago there was a huge flood. While the great king Yu was trying to channel the water out to sea, a turtle crept out of the Yellow River with a curious pattern underside positioned representing the digits from 1 to 9 as circular dots in a 3×3 grid such that the sum of the numbers in each row, column and diagonal was the same: 15, which is also the number of days in each of the 24 cycles of the Chinese solar year.
Also if two cells opposite along a line through the centre square, like 2 and 8, are added the sum is always 10.
The Chinese called this square the Lo Shu, and gave it spiritual importance, believing that it encapsulated the harmonies of the universe. Feng shui, the Chinese system of arranging objects, such as furniture in homes, is in part based on the Lo Shu. Also according to a legend, thereafter people were able to use this pattern in a certain way to control the river and protect themselves from floods.
The Lo Shu Square is the unique normal magic square of order three in which 1 is at the bottom and 2 are in the upper right corner. Every normal magic square of order three is obtained from the Lo Shu by rotation or reflection. It is also referred to as the Magic Square of Saturn.

LoShu Magic Square made of denomination of stamps in a Sheetlet and Postmark

Old-age mutant number tortoise displaying the origin myth of the magic square

But veneration of magic squares was not confined to the Chinese. In India amulets with magic squares were worn as protective charms, in Turkey virgins’ embroidered magic squares on the shirts of warriors and in Western Europe Renaissance astrologers equated them with planets.

In Hindu mythology, Kubera is the god of riches and wealth, and it is believed that if one worships the “Kubera kolam” as ordained in the scriptures, he/she will be rewarded with wealth and prosperity.“Kubera kolam” is a magic square of order 3 constructed using rice flour and drawn on the floors of several houses in South India and flowers & coins are placed in each boxes for puja.

“Kubera kolam”

One more example also belongs to South India where lots of 3 X 3 magic squares,with every row, column and diagonal would add up to 15 are found on walls of 9th to 11th CenturyDhenupureeswarar Temple erected by Chole dynasty. And mostperfect 4X4 magic square is found in famous 10th century Parshvanath Jain temple in Khajuraho, Madhya Pradeshknown as “Chautisa Yantra”.
They are believed to draw divine powers and empower the individual owning them for centuries.

Dhenupureeswarar Temple’s Magic Square and “Chautisa Yantra”

The introduction of Magic Squares in Europe is believed to take place, not only, in 1280, through a Spanish Manuscript where to each one Magic Square a Planet was associated, as in the Islamic Literature, as well as, around year 1300, when the Greek Byzantine, Manuel Moschopoulos wrote a mathematical treatiseon the subject of the Magic Squares based on the works of Ahmad al-Buni. He treated them only as a mathematical concept, without the mystical elements the Arabs had added.
In the 1450s, Luca Pacioli of Italy owned a large collection of examples of magic squares. They began to acquire mythical and philosophical properties; certain numbers are said to be ‘solar’ or ‘lunar’, bringing with them the characteristics associated with the sun and the moon.The most notable names in working or developing Methods for solving Magic Squares were, namely: Albrecht Durer (1471-1528).


Magic squares can be bigger than three rows and columns. The best known of the 4 x 4 squares was immortalized by German artist and mathematician Albrecht Durer in hismost famous work, “Melencolia I”, a woodcut portraying a troubled-looking angel surrounded by scientific objects.In the background, behind a sulky angel appears a 4X4 Magic square which is believed to be the first seen in European art. It is very similar to Yang Hui's square, which was created in China about 250 years before Durer’s time. 

This square is particularly amazing. Not only do the rows, lines and diagonals add up to 34, but the four corners, the four digits in the central square, and the four digits in the top left, top right, bottom left and bottom right quarters do too. There are many other combinations of four numbers in the square that add up to 34, and it is fun looking for them.But the geekiest aspect of the Durer square is that it includes the date of when he thought it up – 1514, which we see on the bottom row.The numbers 1 and 4 at either side of the date correspond respectively to the letters “A” and “D,” which are the initials of the artist.

Durer included this in his woodcut because the square of four is the square of Jupiter, which was considered auspicious and associated with good humour. The genius in Durer’s work is suffering from melancholia; the square of Jupiter brings the influence of his planet and helps to alleviate his depression.

Durer’s magic square and his Melencolia I both also played large roles in Dan Brown's 2009 novel, “The Lost Symbol”.His magic square can also be extended to a magic cube.

“Melencolia I”

  Durer’s Magic square and “Melencolia I”

MAGIC SQUARE OF “The Kiss of Judas”
In the Passion facade of the Sagrada Familia cathedral in Barcelona conceptualized by Antoni Gaudí and designed by sculptorJosep Subirachs, sculpted in 1986 his controversial sculpture “The Kiss of Judas” , also known as the Betrayal of Christ, which occurs in the Garden of Gethsemane after the Last Supper, and leads directly to the arrest of Jesus by the police force of the Sanhedrin, besides  a snakeplaced behind Judas as a traditional symbol of Evil or the Devil, a Magic Square of order 4 is also included.
The square is a modified version of the one from “Melancolia I” by repeating some of the numbers; in which each row, column, and diagonal add up to 33, the age that Jesus is said to have died according to the bible.  But all the other patterns found in Durer’s square appear in this one too.
This is not a normal magic square as two numbers (10 and 14) are duplicated and two (12 and 16) are absent, failing the 1→n2 rule formulated for making magic squares. Also Sagrada Familia's magic square can be extended to a magic cube. 

The Kiss of Judasand Magic Square

  Sagrada Família church façade

“SATOR” MAGIC SQUARE – Filled with Letters not Numbers 

“Sator” are most famous magic squaresof ancient mystical interestfound in a number of grimoires including the Key of Solomon; a square "to overcome envy", from The Book of Power; and two squares from The Book of the Sacred Magic of Abramelin the Mage, the first to cause the illusion of a superb palace to appear, and the second to be worn on the head of a child during an angelic invocation.Several Sator squares also have been found in excavations, including one in the ruins of Pompeii.
This is a squarewhose power comes from its playful arrangement of letters. It contains the Latin words
•           SATOR (sower)
•           AREPO (Arepo, probably a proper name)
•           TENET (holds)
•           OPERA (the works)
•           ROTAS (rolling)

This can be read forwards, backwards, downwards and upwards. The meaning is unclear, but suggestions have been made like “The sower Arepo keeps the world rolling.”
In Rome during the Middle Ages this square was inscribed on a variety of common, everyday objects such as utensils and drinking vessels. It was also found above doorways. It was believed that the square had magical properties, and that making it visible would ward off evil spirits. The words on this square roughly translate to "The Creator (or Saviour) holds the working of the spheres in his hands" 

“Sator” Magic Square

FIRST AND ONLY MAGIC SQUARE POEM, can be read in 2848 ways

In 4th century AD,the Chinese poetess Su Hui composeda Palindromic Poem, “Xuan Ji Tu”, and an array of 29 Lines × 29 Columns, with 841Chinese characters, that can be read at least in 2848 different ways, namely, forward, backward, horizontally, vertically and diagonally.

It is one of the most famous and remains one of the most complicated examples in the literary world and poem has a story goes that she was separated from her husband, a government official named Dou Tao who was sent to the deserts of the north to defend China against the barbarians.Once he arrived in his new location, he took a concubine. To console her unhappiness and try to bring him back Su composed this poem of 841 characters which she wove into a piece of brocade and sent to him.When Dou read it, he was so moved that he left his new lady in the desert and returned to Su.

This poem is depicted on a 2014 issue of Macau which reprints 15 lines in 15 columns taken from the central part of the full poem.

“I use beautiful words and phrases weaved in this brocade to express my ethical complaints and the rationales of them. However, my love for you continues where you can understand it from the deep emotion meanings embedded in this poem”.

Su Hui’s Palindromic Poem, “Xuan Ji Tu”

To be Contd. in  Pt II...........

-      Dr Satyendra Kumar Agrawal : email :

The United States First Stamps

-Col J Dutta & Dr Anjali Dutta

A critical need to modernize the expanding nation's postal service prompted the United States to issue its first postage stamps in 1847.  Steady immigration from Europe and the relentless push onto western frontiers, thriving industrial and commercial sectors, rising literacy rates, war with Mexico, ideological conflict over slavery, sectional tensions all led to the urgency of updating the channels through which written communication flowed.

Patrons and postal officials both recognized the need for the U.S. government to issue stamps that could be used throughout the country and among nations.  Leading the way, in 1840 Great Britain had issued the world's first prepaid postage stamp, a 1-penny portrait of Queen Victoria known as the “Penny Black,” which eliminated payment by the recipient. The first United States general-issue postage stamps, stamps for distribution throughout the country, were prepared under authorization of the Congressional Act of March 3, 1847.

US Pre stamp cover 1832 stamp-less single sheet "Liverpool Ship Letter" pen franked "Paid 5" by a U.S. postal clerk in Philadelphia on September 15, 1832, carried via ship to Liverpool, England.  
Source: The Cooper Collection of Early American Postal History

The United States Congress provided for issuing of stamps by passing an act on March 3, 1847, and the Postmaster-General Cave Johnson immediately gave a contract to the New York City engraving firm of Rawdon, Wright, Hatch, and Edson, a banknote engraving firm, to prepare the essays for the first United States general issue of postage stamps.  Postmaster General Cave Johnson initially instructed the firm to use a portrait of recently deceased President Andrew Jackson on the 5-cent stamp and George Washington on the 10-cent denomination.  However, the essay, drawn in india ink and pencil, showed that Jackson had been replaced by Benjamin Franklin, the first postmaster general appointed under the Continental Congress.

The replacement was explained in a letter of March 20, 1847, written by the printer to the assistant postmaster general:

‘In accordance with your suggestion, we have substituted the Head of Franklin for that of Gen. Jackson, which our Mr. Rawdon was requested to use by the Post Master General.’

Letter about the Essay, Source: Smithsonian Postal Museum

It was felt Franklin's portrait, based on artwork by James B. Longacre, would be more acceptable as a unifying icon for the divided nation because of his role in securing independence for the country.  Both the Franklin and Washington stamps became valid for use on July 1, 1847.

It is interesting to note that the city of Philadelphia had appointed Franklin, who operated a print shop there, its postmaster general in 1737.  This role increased his newspaper's paid advertisements and circulation, because Franklin could distribute his gazette free of charge. Franklin admitted in his autobiography that, in earlier times, he had bribed riders to carry his papers privately and “out of the mails” (outside the official postal system). In his new role as postmaster, he sought more efficient, reliable, and profitable operations.

The first stamp issue of the U.S. was offered for sale on July 1, 1847, in New York City, with Boston receiving stamps the following day, and other cities thereafter. They consisted of an engraved 5-cent red brown stamp depicting Benjamin Franklin and a 10-cent value in black with George Washington. Like all U.S. stamps until 1857, they were imperforate.  The 5-cent stamp paid for a letter weighing less than 1 ounce and traveling less than 300 miles, the 10-cent stamp for deliveries to locations greater than 300 miles or twice the weight deliverable for the 5-cent stamp. Each stamp was hand engraved in steel, and laid out in sheets of 200 stamps. The 5-cent stamp is often found with very poor impressions because the type of ink used contained small pieces of quartz that wore down the steel plates used to print the stamp. On the other hand, most 10-cent stamps are of strong impressions.  A fresh and brilliantly printed 5-cent stamp is prized by collectors. The earliest known use of the Franklin 5¢ is July 7, 1847, while the earliest known use of the Washington 10¢ is July 2, 1847.

The first stamp issues used and mint

At the time the use of stamps was optional.  Letters could still be sent requiring payment of postage on delivery.  Indeed, the post office issued no 2-cent value for prepaying drop letters in 1847, and these continued to be handled as they had been.

Philadelphia Pa 3c. paid stampless cover to Williamson City, Tn

Nevertheless, many Americans took up using stamps enthusiastically.  About 3,700,000 of the 5¢ and about 865,000 of the 10¢ were sold, and enough of those have survived to ensure a ready supply for collectors, although the demand is such that a very fine 5¢ sold for around $500 in 2003, and the 10¢ in very fine condition sells for around $1,400 in used form. Unused stamps are much scarcer, fetching around $6,000 and $28,000 respectively, if in very fine condition.  Stamps in poor condition are available for as little as 5% to 10% of these figures.

Essay of 5-cent first issue. Source: Smithsonian Postal Museum

Franklin 5¢ on cover. Source: Smithsonian Postal Museum

The post office had become so efficient by 1851 that Congress was able to reduce the common rate to three cents (which remained unchanged for over thirty years), requiring issue of a new set of stamps. Moreover, the common rate now applied to letters carried up to 3000 miles.  This rate, however, only applied to prepaid mail; a letter sent without a stamp still cost the recipient five cents—clear evidence that Congress envisioned making stamp use mandatory in the future.  It did so in 1855.  The 1-cent drop-letter rate was also restored though Post Office plans did not at first include a stamp for it.  Later an essay for a 6-cent Franklin double-weight stamp was converted into a drop-letter value.  Along with this 1¢ stamp, the post office initially issued only two additional denominations in the series of 1851:  3¢ and 12¢, these three stamps going on sale that July and August.

Since the 1847 stamps no longer conformed to any postal rate, they were declared invalid after short period, during which the public could exchange old stamps for new ones.  Ironically, however, within a few years the Post Office found that stamps in the old denominations were needed after all, and so, added a 10¢ value to the series in 1855, followed by a 5¢ stamp the following year.  The full series included a 1¢ profile of Franklin in blue, a 3¢ profile of Washington in red brown, a 5¢ portrait of Thomas Jefferson, and portraits of Washington for 10¢ green and 12¢ black values.

The 1¢ stamp achieved notoriety, at least among philatelists, because production problems (the stamp design was too tall for the space provided) led to a number of plate modifications done in piecemeal fashion, and there are seven major varieties seen, ranging in price from $100 to $200,000 (the latter for the only stamp of the 200 images on the first plate that displays the design's top and bottom ornamentation complete). Sharp-eyed collectors periodically find the rare types going unrecognized.


1851-56 imperforate US Postage stamps

In 1875 the Post Office issued reprints of the first stamps as part of the nationwide celebration of the United States Centennial.

5c reprint of the first stamp

Perforated stamps were introduced in 1857.  In 1860 24¢, 30¢ and 90¢ values (with still more images of Washington and Franklin) were issued for the first time. All of the designs of 1851 were re-released in the new perforated format and three new designs were added.  These higher denominations, especially the 90c value, were available for such a short time (a little over a year) that they had virtually no chance of being used. The 90c stamp used is a very rare item, and so frequently forged that authorities counsel collectors to shun cancelled copies without expert certification.

 The perforated issues of 1857 and 1860

The issue was declared invalid for postage in May 1861, as the Confederate States had supplies of them. Therefore, stamps used after that date usually have the marking "OLD STAMPS/NOT RECOGNIZED" on the cover.
In February 1861, a congressional act directed that cards, blank or printed shall also be deemed as mailable matter, and charged with postage at the rate of one cent an ounce.  Private companies soon began issuing post cards, printed with a rectangle in the top right corner where the stamp was to be affixed.  The Post Office did not produce pre-stamped "postal cards" for another dozen years.

1. John N. Luff and Benno Loewy, The Postage Stamps of the United States, New York, Scott Stamp & Coin Co., 1902.
2. Lester G. Brookman, The Nineteenth Century Postage Stamps of the United States, Lindquist, 1947.

-       -Col Jayanta Dutta & Dr Anjali Dutta - email :

New issues from other Countries

Cocos (Keeling) Islands : 18 October 2016

Art of Cocos (Keeling) Islands

A special stamp issue that celebrates creative culture on Cocos (Keeling) Islands.The artworks on the stamps, minisheet and cover have been created by Hamidah Abedin, Rebecca Bagnell-Smith, Pam Jones, Sandy McKendrick, Emma Washer and the Cocos Youth Group.
The Big Barge Art Centre, housed in a restored former working barge, is a local hub for fostering traditional and non-traditional art-making. Two of the centre’s recent community projects are Art Adrift and Art Afloat, the works of which express a vital connection with place, responding to the ebb and flow of life on the islands. In the long tradition of beachcombing, the artists have gleaned their materials from the shoreline, refashioning the flotsam to give it new meaning.
While the artworks reflect the rhythms of island life – boats and sea floats, for example – they also respond to the pressing environmental problem of detritus borne across the waters on ocean currents.
Celebrating Christmas in Switzerland

Swiss Post has introduced its variation of Christmas stamp issue that consists of four bright items.The stamps depict four traditional attributes of Christmas that always contributes to the festive mood. These are a fir-tree, a snowman, a sledge and a tiny angel . The evening of 24 December, is very much a family celebration in Switzerland. This is the evening when small children get to see the decorated and lit tree in all its splendour for the first time, complete with wrapped gifts underneath.
In Switzerland, it is not uncommon to have candles rather than electric lights on the tree. Unfortunately, there is the occasional accident involving burning trees. Electric lights decorating Swiss Christmas trees usually emit a warm yellowish light, rather than the blinking coloured lights often seen in the United States and Britain.
Traditionally, children in Catholic areas were told that the presents were brought by the Christkind (German), Le petit Jésus (French), or Gesu Bambino. But these days, children are just as familiar with the character almost universally recognised as Santa Claus.
The arrival of New Year
To welcome the arrival of the New Year, Chunghwa Post has prepared for releasing a set of two stamps and a souvenir sheet entitled “New Year’s Greeting Postage Stamps (Issue of 2016).” The design for the set of stamps uses a silhouette to express the courage and clarion-call of the cock. Gold and orange-red transmit an atmosphere of joy, good fortune and celebration for the year of the rooster. The background of the souvenir sheet is of a soft rose color dotted with flowers and colorful, diagonal lines, celebrating the advent of the New Year.
1) NT$3.5 stamp: “The Golden Cock Proclaiming Joy” is the theme of this stamp. The cock call at dawn heralds the new day; spring marks the beginning of the New Year.
2) NT$13 stamp: An Exuberance of Joyous Celebrations. Being a homonym of the word for “auspiciousness” (ji), the word for “rooster” (ji) expresses the wish that the New Year will bring an abundance of the riches of life.
3) NT$12 souvenir sheet: A pair of roosters and an auspicious Chinese ruyi knot depict the rooster as auspicious and express a wish for peace in all things, complete satisfaction and lasting happiness.

Blogs & Websites

Philatelic Clubs & Societies 

Baroda Philatelic Society -
Chandigarh Philatelic Club
Deccan Philatelic Society – Pune, Maharashtra
Eastern India Philatelists’ Association -   
India Study Circle -
Indian Stamp Ghar -
Indian Thematic Society, Ludhiana -
Ludhiana Philatelic Club
Numismatic & Philatelic Association of Vellore Fort
Philatelic Congress of India -
Philatelic Society of Rajasthan, Jaipur
Rajkot Philatelic Society – Rajkot, Gujarat
Gujarat Philatelic Association - Ahmedabad
South India Philatelists Association -
The Army Philatelic Society, Pune


Ananthpuri Stamp Bulletin  November 2016
This is a blog of e-stamp Club . The idea of this blog is to extend philatelic fraternity in all corners of the world. Readers may write about themselves with their collecting interests and share new ideas with other philatelists.  New Post on recent issues, news on stamp activities and Contribution by members are published every day on this blog. Readers may also express their views on any philatelic matter which will be published under Club News at Rainbow Stamp Cub Blog. Philatelic Clubs and Societies may also send brief write ups. News about new issues of India and abroad and other information related with Philately are regularly posted on this blog. Readers may send reports on new issues, special covers, cancellations & philatelic activities of their area for inclusion in this Blog. - Editor

Current Philatelic Magazines – Newsletters
VADOPHIL, Editor - Prashant Pandya and published by Baroda Philatelic Society, Vadodara. Website -

ITS Stamp News - Quarterly - Editor: Suraj Jaitly Publisher: Indian Thematic Society website -

Ananthpuri Stamp Bulletin - Monthly e -stamp bulletin of Anathapuri Philatelic Association, Thiruvanthapuram

Journal of the Army Philatelic Society : Editor – Col Jayanta Dutta

SIPA Bulletin

Stamp of India Collectors’ Companion - India’s first weekly e-newsletter edited by Madhukar and Savita Jhingan from Stamps of India, New Delhi. E- mail: Website:

India Post – Quarterly Journal of the India Study Circle publishes original articles submitted by members of ISC.

GPA News – Published by Gujarat Philatelists’ Association, Ahemadabad.

Stamps Today  Stamp & Coin Magazine edited by Vijay Seth

Promotional Section

Indian Postal History- Focus on Tamil Nadu by Dr. K.Ramachandiran N

The book, Indian Postal History- focus on Tamil Nadu by Dr. K.RamachandiranN published in 2011 is a wonderful book. The book is first of its kind with focus on Tamil Nadu postal history. 
The author of this book, Dr. K.Ramachandira N is a retd. Officer of  Indian Postal Service.The University of Madras conferred on him  Ph.D. for his thesis on "Origin, Growth and Development of Postal Services in Tamil Nadu Circle". This book is an offshoot of  his thesis.

The book starts with a concise chapter on Postal History of India from the feudal era to 1947. The other six chapters are devoted to various aspects of postal history of Tamil Nadu from 1854 to 2000.

This book got Large Silver with 78 points in the Literature Class in INPEX 2013 held in Mumbai.

-       Swamynathan R- Mumbai : email :

Courtesy - News and Image Resource to this issue :  

International Stamp News; Indian Philately Digest ,  Stamps of India ;  Prashant Pandya – Vadodara,  Madhukar Jhingan - New Dehi, Suresh R - Bangalore

Address for communication:

Jeevan Jyoti,  c / o Mr. Ajay Srivastav Wildlife Institute of India, Post Box No. 18, Chandrabani, Dehradun – 248002. India  
 E-mail – 

*  Last date for receiving write ups – 25th of every month. Kindly send images in jpg compressed format & text in MS Word only.  
*  If you liked this issue please forward it to your friends and help in promoting philately.

A Request to Readers & Contributors -

*  Please do not send the text in scan form or PDF. Send your write ups in MS Word only.

Kindly specify your contribution such as article/News/ Reader’s Right /  Beginners’ Section/ Lighter Side etc.                                  

*  Please do not send forwarded messages for promotional section if you want to give any information for promotion please write personally with brief write up. As this newsletter is not used for any commercial purpose in any manner.

Attention -
Please send limited number of images in compressed jpg format only with your article. Please send text and images separately. Please do not send text or image for publication in PDF. 

Any material from this newsletter may be reproduced only with the written permission from the editor. 
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                …..Happy Collecting…………………………………………………………………            

Rainbow Stamp News is edited and published monthly by Jeevan Jyoti, from Dehradun ( Uttarakhand) India.

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Recent Awards

INPEX 2017, Mumbai - Large Silver

CHINA 2016 - Bronze

TAIPEI 2015 - Bronze

CG International Philatelic Promotion Award 2014, Germany - ( 4th Position)

INPEX 2013, Mumbai - Vermeil

SHARJAH 2012, Sharjah ( UAE ) - Silver Bronze

IPHLA 2012, Mainz - Germany : Bronze

NDIPEX 2011 - World Stamp Exhibition, New Delhi - Bronze

JOBURG 2010 - 26th Asian International Stamp Exhibition, Johannesburg - Silver Bronze

PORTUGAL 2010 - World Stamp Exhibition, Lisbon - Bronze

Hong Kong 2009 -23rd Asian International Stamp Exhibition, Hong Kong - Silver Bronze

About Me

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Participated in different philatelic exhibitions Wrote for philately column in The Pioneer and worked as sub-editor for U-Phil Times published from United Philatelists, Kanpur.Did Schooling from Kanpur Vidya Mandir and Post Graduation in Botany from A.N.D. College Kanpur.


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