The lost era of a postman: Replacing sentiments with technology


By Arnab Mitra

The Indian Post Office started its service on 1 April 1774. It started with a bang but gradually got replaced with other technological advances. Now, the postman will only be remembered through novels and films.Untitled-1

There was a time when letter was the only means of communication between people. However, in this age of Internet, everyone wants to communicate at lightning speed. Amidst the flurry of texting, tweeting, online chatting, whatsapping; the art of letter writing seems to be disappearing.

In an interaction with NewsGram, Jiban Mukherjee, the head postman of Barasat GPO, Kolkata, tells about his life as a postman.

Arnab Mitra: When did you join the Indian Post office and at which post?

Jiban Mukherjee: I joined as a postman in the year 1972 at Howrah GPO, West Bengal.

AM: Do you enjoy your job as a postman?

JM: This is sort of a weird job as the people hug you on getting good news and blame you for bad news.

AM: Nowadays internet acts as a medium between the people. Is the postman being forgotten slowly by the society?

JM: After the advent of the internet, the jobs at the post office have reduced in an assorted manner. Today, the post office only survives on official works, and it won’t be long when the postman will be extinct from the society.

postman1_1417679230AM: Letter writing is an art and it also acts as a medium of imparting education and knowledge. Can e-mail or chat retain this form?

JM: These days people use abbreviations like ‘u’, ‘d’ ,‘4’ and many other similar abbreviations. If letter is a means of imparting education, then the modern form of chatting works in a reverse manner, destroying the education system.

AM: Regarding your job, do you face any problem in adapting to the new technology?

JM: I am a computer illiterate and that is my main problem.

AM: Are you happy with the salary and pension structure of the Central Government?technology-298256_640

JM: Yes, I have no complains on that.

AM: Now you are the head postman at Barasat GPO. Has your workload increased?

JM: No, to speak the truth, I have no work except signing the files.