Like a bad penny...

Stubborn souvenirs

It was the second time the courier delivery man tried to deliver the package to Bhat, a State awardee for handicrafts. A fortnight ago, she refused to accept the package from the sender “Prabandhak, Bharat Sarkar, India Government Mint, Alipore, Kolkata” that was insured for Rs 2,310. Besides it was addressed to ‘Anani Bhat’ although the residential address was correct.

“I was puzzled. I had no clue who sent the package, why it came to me and what I was supposed to do with it,” Bhat told Deccan Herald.

The package, which had obviously returned to the sender in Kolkata, like the proverbial bad penny, returned two weeks later. This time, Bhat recalled that the previous year, when she received the award from the State Handicrafts Development Corporation her name had been misspelt as ‘Anani Bhat’.

It was with a mixed sense of resignation and curiosity that Bhat accepted the package, to find that it contained the commemorative coins.

Bhat is flummoxed about why she had been chosen for the gift of coins as she had not sought them. The envelope containing the coins had no letter giving the reasons nor a telephone number on which the sender could be contacted.

When her son surfed the web to resolve the mystery, he found that the coin was released to commemorate 150th birth anniversary of poet Rabindranath Tagore.
An RBI officer Deccan Herald spoke to said the new coins were sent only on order. A prescribed application form had to be filled in and submitted to RBI which would forward it to the Mint, the Department of Finance, Government of India. The department would send the coins to the addressee. He said the coins would cost double or thrice the denomination and not many would apply.

The 150-rupee coin issued by the Reserve Bank of India, weighs 35 gm and has 50 per cent of silver, 40 per cent of copper and five per cent of nickel and zinc. Both the 15-rupee and five-rupee coins have Tagore’s image on the reverse.

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