History of Pakistan Postage Stamps

                                History of Pakistan Postage Stamps

                                                    By: A. I. Siddiqui

Pakistan appeared on the map of the world on 14th August, 1947 but the history of Pakistan Postage Stamps starts with the first postage stamp of Indo-Pak known as Scinde Dawk Stamp. It was the first Asian stamp issued by the province of Sindh now forming a part of Pakistan. Sir Bartle Frere then Government authorised the introduction of Scinde Dawk Stamp. He claimed that these stamps were printed by De La Rue Printers but not reference to them has ever been found in the record.

The stamps were circular in shape and embossed on white blue and red paper. The red stamps were produced separately, like the small wafers used to seal the letters. Stamps inscribed Scinde District Dawk in the belt surrounding the emblem of East India Company along with the value 1/2 Anna.

These stamps were used in the province until October, 1854 when they were superseded by the first stamp issued by the British India in April 1854. Many stamps were issued by the Indian Post Office till creation of Pakistan on 14th August, 1947. The feasibility of introducing Pakistan Postage Stamps on "Independence Day" was explored but due to shortage of time and limited resources it was impossible. Initially Pakistan continued to use Indian stamps and on 1st October, 1947 Indian stamps, both ordinary and service, overprinted "PAKISTAN" were introduced by the Pakistan Post Office. The overprint was applied by the Security Printing Press Nasik as well as by the Government presses in the country. On 31st October, 1949 all the Indian stamps overprinted "PAKISTAN" were demonetized and Government also issued orders that any overprinted stamps in Government offices were to be written off and destroyed by burning under the departmental arrangements. Rubber stamping or hand stamping was never allowed, postage stamps bearing rubber overprints are therefore, unauthorised.

The detailed study of these stamps has been made by Mr. U. A. G. Isani, which is under print. The Siddiqi catalogue numbering has been used in this study for the convenience of the philatelists. The following stamps were overprinted "PAKISTAN" by the Security Printing Press "Nasik" as well as by the Government printing presses: