In letter and spirit

In letter and spirit

Past forward

In letter and spirit

The era of digitisation may have led to a decline in the ‘art’ of letter-writing, but there are still many who feel communicating through letters has its own charm. For those old-fashioned ones at heart, the ‘Travelling Letter Box’ (TLB) comes as a piece of good news.

An initiative of the department of post, it promises to deliver the letter the same day for short distances. All that one needs to do is to drop the letter in a box in one of the five short-haul trains, namely Madras Mail, Rani Chennamma Express, Netravathi Express, Hubballi-Vijaywada and Bengaluru-Coimbatore trains. The service is for those trains which carried mails earlier too.

Prashant Alex Blake, who works with SBI, feels that such an initiative is helpful, especially in an age where the art of writing letters is dying. “This will certainly encourage those interested in writing letters. For instance, a letter that I post from Hubballi to my friend in Belagavi generally takes five days to reach him through ordinary post. So I prefer sending it by bus. The ‘Travelling Letter Box’ will be of great use to someone like me,” he says.

“However, the only issue, I feel, is that they haven’t publicised the initiative properly. This is something that they should focus on,” adds Prashant.

Harpreet also likes writing letters and feels that they have a different feel and touch altogether. She says that the TLB is a fantastic idea and definitely a faster method of delivering post, provided all the logistics are in place. “The logistics need to be in order so that the TLB is fully up and running. It shouldn’t be the case that it is operational for only four days a week and out of order for the rest of the week. The initiative should run smoothly after six months or even a year.”

She adds that it is easy to start something new but maintenance is of utmost importance in this regard and needs to be taken care of from the very beginning.

Nagappan Nachiappan, a software developer, expresses that he will consider making use of the TLB only if it is really fast in terms of delivering post. “Unless it is that fast, I see it as an extra effort to make a trip to the station to drop a letter. It is like an additional barrier in my mind. I would much rather drop it at my own convenience in a postbox a few 100 metres from my house.”