SRINAGAR: An Indian man provided some comic relief from the grim news that has glutted social networking sites over the past few days. Perhaps stopping at reading the title of Kashmiri-American poet Aga Shahid Ali’s poetry collection, The Country Without a Post Office, he requested Kashmir postal authorities to provide him details about the number of post offices in Kashmir.
A person using twitter handle @ kanumurikarthik( the name in the twitter handle is Manikanta Kanumuri) had filed an application under the Right to Information Act, asking the General Post Office, Srinagar, to provide him the following information:
How much percent of Kashmir is covered by postal Department? How many post offices are in Kashmir? What should be the number of post offices in Kashmir according to the postal departmental norms? The gap between the number of post offices required and post offices established and what steps are being taken to fill in the gap.
In its reply, the office of the Chief Postmaster General, Srinagr, had said that a total of 1699 post offices are functioning in Jammu and Kashmir, 705 in the Valley alone.
When Manikanta was informed by his twitter friends that he had laboured futilely, he tweeted: “Ok. I took it in literal sense. And filed RTI. Just read the poem. Exaggeration or poetry. IDK. Thanks anyways (sic).” He then deactivated his account.
The title of poetry collection was inspired by the events in the 1990, when Kashmir rose in revolt against India and the entire official structure collapsed. Mail wasn’t delivered for several months.