When we were young all of us were ever so excited to watch the train storm past us. Running at a lightning speed, trains have always captured our imaginations as it goes by making a peculiar noise bound towards an unknown far away destination.

Did you know that India is the fourth largest railway network in the world comprising of 119,630 kilometers of total track with over 7,216 stations! Indian Railways also happens to be the world’s eighth-largest employer by number of employees (1.4 million).

Continue reading Rail Gadi: Indian Locomotives on stamps!

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depiction-dasavatara-indian-coins

यदा यदा हि धर्मस्य ग्लानिर्भवति भारत

धर्मसंस्थापनार्थाय सम्भवामि युगे युगे॥

“It is I who descends to earth from time to time to reinstitute the order when the anarchy prevails” – the concept of Divine descend is a phenomenon that speaks about the manifestation of divinity into a form. In Bhagawad Gitā [1] Shri Kiṣṇa declares that God himself incarnates to eradicate the evil, to put an end to the impious practices and to eliminate the chaos that prevailed in an otherwise peaceful society. These incarnations or the Avatāras is a core concept of Hinduism and being the preserver and sustainer Aspect of God within the Hindu Trinity; they are often associated with Viṣṇu. When pertaining to Avatāras in the Hindu tradition, the most widely associated deity is clearly Viṣṇu. According to the Bhāgavata Purāṇa, Viṣṇu has innumerable Avatāras in unlimited universes, though there are ten major incarnations, known collectively as Daśāvatāra. The concept of Daśāvatāra – ten incarnations of Lord Viṣṇu – is not treated as mere mythological or religious stories in India, but is incorporated in the roots of Indian society in the form of philosophy as well as performing arts and creative arts. The most unusual combination of Daśāvatāra mythology, Indian art forms and the practicality of Indian society is “the Depiction of Daśāvatāra on Indian Coins”.

Continue reading Depiction of Daśāvatāra on Indian Coins

India has been a riot of colours with each region developing a culturally unique style of paintings! Miniature Paintings undoubtedly are the best of all. Starting from merely being the illustrations for religious texts, Miniature Paintings have stolen many hearts with its varied topics of depiction. Originally the sacred texts were written on long narrow strips of palm leaves bound together in form of a bundle. Due to the size of the palm leaf that was usually one foot long and less than 3 inches wide, the area available for painting the illustrations was limited. The illustrations, therefore, are miniature in size and hence came to be known as “Miniature Painting”. These manuscripts were meant to be held in one’s hands and viewed from a close distance.

Continue reading The Colourful World of Indian Miniature Paintings on Stamps

Afghanistan, which stands at a crossroad of the ancient civilizations in the East and West, has kept a unique treasure in different parts of its land. In this blog, we will explore the Cultural Heritage of Afghanistan which has been destroyed or is at a risk of ruin from armed conflict.

 

Hundreds of Archaeological sites, monuments and unique cultural and historical objects relating to different periods, such as Greco Bactrian, Kushan, Sassanid-Ephtalits, Hindu Shahis, and Islamic, were unearthed in this country. A large portion of these objects was kept in the Kabul National Museum and numbers of them were preserved in the depot of the Archaeological Institute.

Continue reading Cultural Heritage of Afghanistan on stamps

banknotes-of-the-world

Welcome to our series of “Banknotes of the world”. Though banknotes by their very definition are a type of negotiable promissory note, made by a bank, payable to the bearer on demand, they are artistic treasures in their own right. All the countries are no doubt proud of their history and heritage and proudly boast about them on their currency notes. Currency notes and their designs and the reason behind their issuance are in itself a topic of great interest and study.

Continue reading Banknotes of the World-I

Enigma, riddle and unexplained secrets, the mysteries of the world have returned to make you more curious about the unsolved phenomena. It is hard to believe in the existence of these events, due to the lack of evidence that make people suspicious and curious. These mysteries are popularised by the government by illustrating them on their coins and stamps. Continue reading The unsolved mysteries of the world illustrated through stamps and coins: part 2

“Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast…”

We all grew up reading about the wondrous adventures of Alice. The tale plays with logic, giving the story lasting popularity with adults as well as with children. It won’t be an exaggeration to say, Alice actually heralded our childhood journey through the fantasy world. The lack of logic in the story is a nice contrast to our world that is too full of cold logic.

 

Continue reading Alice’s Wonderland on stamps!

seven-wonders-india

‘Shrusti Devo Shilpam, TTasya Pratikruti Manushya Shilpam’, it means ‘Nature is the art of god and human art is just a gist and imagination of it’. Therefore, the art developed by the men is influenced and copied from the nature. Indian art and architecture has beautiful and magnificent examples of this brilliant influence. These monuments are the insignia of Indian culture and tradition. There are so many of such splendid structures on this land, yet the best chosen among them are renowned monuments known all over the world as the “seven wonders of India”. These massive architectural miracles have ornamented this land with its splendid beauty.

Continue reading Architectural marvels of all time: Seven Wonders of India

coins-of-jahangir

The Mughals hardly require any introduction; it is perhaps the most famous dynasty in Indian history. The coinage of the Mughal Empire occupies a unique position in the history of Indian numismatics. Endowed with the imagination and magnificence of Akbar and Jahangir that was fostered by the later Mughal emperors, Mughals presented a breathtaking example of coinage in terms of art and wealth. Here, in this session, we will see the endearing couplets which beautifully bore on the coins of Jahangir. These soulful couplets are the clear evidence was of his obsession with the Poetries. His obsession reflected excellently through his coins.

Continue reading Passion of the King illustrated: Coins of Jahangir

The Persian Gulf Rupee or the Gulf Rupee was a currency issued by the Government of India and the Reserve Bank of India for use in the Persian Gulf and the Arabic peninsula. The Indian rupee was an official currency in several areas that were controlled by the British and governed from India and it was a legal tender in the Gulf countries up till 1966.

Continue reading Gulf Rupee and Haj Notes