Monday, September 10, 2012

Cooking Gas Connection Transfer and Rs 5 Stamp Paper

An interesting coincidence - I was reading about Charles Babbage and was fascinated by his creation of the foundations of Operations Research:

Undaunted, he applied his new method to the analysis of the postal system of his day, and proved that the cost of accepting and assigning a value to every piece of mail according to the distance it had to travel was far more expensive than the cost of transporting it. The British Post Office boosted its capabilities instantly and economically by charging a flat rate, independent of the distance each piece had to travel--the "penny post" that persists around the world to this day.
While the British government saw sense a hundred years ago in transforming the postal rates, Indian government continues to thrust stamp papers on us mindlessly, whose absence of value is visible even without operations research.

I need a stamp paper to state that my father has expired and that the gas connection may be transferred into my mother's name.

I need another stamp paper to state  that the original documents for allotment of a gas connection, from over 30 years ago, cannot be located.

In each case, I need to get them notarised  by a Notary Public.

Each stamp paper is worth Rs. 5. It has to be bought from specified locations.

I am certain the cost of producing and selling that paper - as each paper sale has to be documented - has got to be more than the sale price.

The cost of procuring it is certainly much more than Rs. 5 for me and I am not even including the cost of the time spent.

I can see some notional value in notarisation in case my mother disowns signing the documents.

I have not been able to think of any meaningful benefit from the stamp paper even by a Telgi. The value is just not high enough to even counterfeit!

Ah, the hope of a paperless bureaucracy! Who knows - as in Pete Seeger's wonderful song - Adam's children might surprise us all :)

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