Anything on cricket, especially at a time when the World Cup is around the corner, will be in demand in the cricket-driven country. Keeping in view the craze for the sport in India, the postal department will be selling commemorative stamps of the 2015 World Cup printed and released by the New Zealand postal department.
New Zealand, one of the two host countries, is releasing stamps on February 4 and the Indian postal department has placed an order for one lakh stamp sheets. The commemorative issue will have a sheet of 14 self-adhesive stamps and a set of two first-day covers. A one-ounce silver-proof curved coin will also be part of the memorabilia, but it will not be available in India.
The set is priced at NZ$11.20 in New Zealand, but in India it will be available for Rs 400.
“The stamps will be available at each of our 25 postal circles and further they will be selling it through their counters. Apart from philatelists, the stamps will be in demand among the cricket fans,” said a Delhi-based senior Indian postal department official.
The stamps come with the theme “14 teams, one champion”. Each stamp sheet incorporates the official 2015 World Cup logo and each of the 14 nations is represented by a stamp of cricket ball in the colour of their respective team jersey.
Last year, to mark the FIFA World Cup, the postal department had issued a set of four stamps.? But it is for that first time that instead of releasing its own stamps for an event, the department will be selling stamps issued by some other country.
Over the years, hundreds of stamps have been issued by different countries with cricket as the theme. The first post-Independence era stamp was released in 1971. Two years later, a 30 paisa denomination stamp was issued on KS Ranjit Singhji. The Indian postal department has a policy of not releasing a stamp of a living person, but an exception was made when Sachin Tendulkar’s stamp was released in 2013 to mark his 200th Test in Mumbai on November 14, 2013, which was also his retirement Test.
Stamps on cricket legends Sunil Gavaskar and Kapil Dev were released by St Vincent and the Grenadines in the West Indies.