A commemorative postage stamp on the 50th Anniversary of the Indian Civil Aviation :
Issued by India
Issued on Oct 15, 1982
Issued for : The Posts and Telegraphs Department is privileged to issue a commemorative stamp on 50 years of Civil Aviation in India.
Description of Designs : The stamp, designed by Air India, depicts J. R. D. Tata against the background of his aircraft ‘Puss Moth’ which was flown by him on 15 October, 1932 from Karachi to Bombay. The first day cover shows Puss Moth, Air India 747 and Indian Air Lines AB-300. Cancellation has been designed by Charanjit Lal.
Type : Stamp, Postal Used
Watermark : No
Colour : Multicolour
Denomination : 325 Paise
Printed at : India Security Press
- Civil aviation has ushered in immense benefits to India in the last fifty years. From a very modest beginning in the thirties when the first efforts were made to start air services in the country, civil aviation has progressed to a level where it has become a vital link in the country’s overall transportation system.
- India’s two flag carriers, Air–India and Indian Airlines, between them today carry nearly eight million passengers a year. While Air-India’s route network spans five continents and connects the main centres of trade and commerce in the world with India, Indian Airlines has extensive operations both within India as well as to neighbouring countries. Both airlines have modern jet fleets and their standards of service are comparable to those of other airlines in the most advanced countries.
- Looking back on the fifty years of civil aviation history in this country, the progress achieved is indeed impressive. Although India had the distinction of having organised the world’s first mail service as far back as February 1911, when Henri Piquet flew mail from Allahabad to Naini Junction 10 kms away, commercial aviation in the real sense did not begin until the early thirties. India is astride the main east-west trade route and when the old colonial powers like Britain, Netherlands and France first started their long distance air services to their colonies in the east in the early thirties, the route lay across India. It was during this period that various experiments were made in starting services in India to link with Imperial Airways at Karachi. However, Tata Airlines was the first to start a regular scheduled airmail service in India between Karachi and Madras via Ahmedabad, Bombay and Bellary from October 15, 1932. The first service was flown in a Puss Moth by J. R. D. Tata, who is rightly regarded as the Father of Indian Civil Aviation. On October 15, 1962 Shri Tata re-enacted his Karachi–Bombay flight of 30 years ago in a Leopard Moth.
- The Government nationalised the air transport industry in 1953 when the growth of commercial aviation far outstripped the demand. The 1953 Act created two separate Corporations – Indian Airlines for domestic operations and Air–India for international operations.
- In the last three decades, the two corporations have expanded their fleets and route networks. In the early seventies Air-India acquired the Boeing 747s, while Indian Airlines went in for the Airbus A300s a few years later. Air-India today has a fleet of ten Boeing 747s, six Boeing 707s and two A300-B4 Airbus aircraft with one more due shortly. Indian Airlines has a fleet of ten Airbus A300s, twenty-five Boeing 737s, six Fokker Friendships and twelve Avro 748s. By providing rapid means of communications not only within India but outside as well, both Indian Airlines and Air-India have played a key role in helping the country’s march towards progress.
- A new third level carrier, Vayudoot, has recently been set up to provide services in the mountainous north-eastern region of India as a start. Later, it is planned to expand such services to other regions of India.
- Text by courtesy : Air India.