Government will release stamps on Ramayana, Mahabharata, besides honouring freedom fighters like Batukeshwar Dutt, Sukhdev, Ashfaqullah Khan and legendary artists such as Mohammed Rafi and Kishore Kumar, among others. “I have discussed it with Philately board. Postal Stamps should be issued on Ramayana and Mahabharata series. Country’s great cultural concepts should be respected,” Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said while releasing a commemorative stamp on women empowerment.
He said that the stamps on various personalities will be available for regular use as well instead of just being limited to commemorative category. “If someone wants stamp of Subhash Chandra Bose, it should be available at post offices. If someone wants stamp of Bhagat Singh then it should be also available. Our government is very clear that various people have contributed in building nation. There ways of doing it may be different, but we will respect everyone,” Prasad said.
He said that he has directed postal departments to make available stamps of prominent personalities for regular use across post offices in the country.
The government will also release stamp of Communist leader and former MP Bhupesh Gupta following a request from CPI. He said that stamps of Sukhdev, Batukeshwar Dutt, Ashfaqullah Khan, Ramprasad Bismil, Bagha Jatin and Khudiram Bose will be released. The minister also mentioned names of Chandrashekhar Azad, Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and other freedom fighters whose stamps will be available for regular use. India Post has so far released commemorative stamp of these freedom fighters.
He said that regular usage stamps to honour famous singers like Mohammed Rafi, Kishore Kumar, Hemant Kumar, Manna Dey, Mukesh will also be released.
Talking about women empowerment, Prasad said that Indian society has always honoured power of women since ages. “Around 2500 years ago when Shankaracharya visited Mandana Misra in Bihar for debate. Mandana Misra asked him to debate with his wife first. Debate took place that is different thing but I see at it as that 2500 years ago wife of a brahmin philosopher was allowed to debate with unknown saint then,” Prasad said.
BJP MP Meenakshi Lekhi who was present at the occasion said women did not have power to franchise in developed countries like the US and Switzerland for many years but India gave them this power the day it achieved independence. “Women in America did not had power to franchise till 1920. In 1972, advance country like Switzerland gave this power to women their country. India gave this power to women the moment it gain independence. Women have always been empowered in India,” Lekhi said.