Monday, March 28, 2011

Is your PC the new PO?

When IT minister Kapil Sibal launched 'e-post office' on March 9, announcing with confidence that Indian customers can now transact postal business any time, anywhere using either a debit card or credit card, we decided to put his words to test. This is what we found
Of Course, you don't see any of those things we hate about the post office -- boisterous crowds, brusque staff and long queues. But will this website (, designed and run by National Informatics Center deliver the package it promises?

Splashed in yellow and red, the site allows a virtual tour of the post office. But as simple as the registration process appears (a simple form that requires people to fill in details like email address other mailing details), the problem lies with signing up. Even after several attempts, we were unable to sign up.Once you are able to overcome the first roadblock, and try to get to the philately section, you meet with your second hurdle. And this one's a dead end.

The section claims you can buy stamps and view new releases from the stamp issue program. A click lead us to a dead page.

Otherwise, the website has quite a bit to offer. There is the eMO (electronic money order), which is a web-based money transfer service within the country, and an iMO (instant money order) that promises to disburse money orders within 60 seconds. Tariffs for eMO are the same as that of ordinary MO (money order).

On the positives, you also don't need to memorise pin codes. There is a search available that allows the user to find the pin code by searching for it depending on the state or district or the post office of that locality. And like with other private courier services, the e-post office allows the user to track speed posts, international mail and money orders by simply submitting the item identification number.

You can also gather information on the various services provided by the post office, whether it's business posts or insurance and banking. And when registering a complaint, there is an exhaustive list of options to choose from: misplaced letter, parcel, money order, etc.

But what one is tempted to first register a complaint against is a feature called Crafts Museum in the stamp section. After a few clicks to reach the designated feature, all we were told was that it housed 32,000 artifacts. It refused tell us more about even one such item. It's a great idea but it doesn't get a stamp of our approval.
source;MiD DAY.COM

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