Communications and Information
          8                                      Technology
            COMMUNICATIONS and information technology in the country are handled by the
      Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology and Ministry of Communications. The
      Ministry of Electronics and Technology promotes e-governance and sustainable growth of the
      electronics, IT and ITeS industries, enhancing India’s role in internet governance while the
      Ministry of Communications looks after the Department of Posts and Department of
      Telecommunications. Main activities and initiatives of these departments are given here.
      Relevant Websites: www.meity.gov.in www.indiapost.gov.in
      Posts
            The modern postal system, the most preferred facilitator of communication, was established
      in India by Lord Clive in 1766 and it was further developed by Warren Hastings in 1774. The
      expansion of its network was made during 1786 to 1793. For the first time, the post offices were
      regulated through an Act of 1837 on a uniform basis to unite all the post office establishments
      throughout the then existing three Presidencies into one all-India service. Thereafter, the Post
      Office Act of 1854 reformed the entire fabric of the postal system and the post offices of India
      were placed on the present administrative footing on 1st October 1854. This was the time when
      the first postage stamp valid across the country was issued at an affordable and uniform rate of
      postage, fixed by weight and not by distance. For the first time the common man could use a
      facility which included free delivery of letters from door to door—a privilege previously enjoyed
      only by heads of states and state officials. Since then, the Post Office touched the life of every
      person of the country. Even though the British established the post office for imperial interests, it
      along with the railways and telegraph, became one of the greatest engines of social development.
            The statute presently governing the postal services in the country is the Indian Post Office
      Act, 1898. In the mid-19th century, the post office served as facilitator of travel with its
      conveyance systems and by maintaining the dak bungalows and dak serais. Mail order services
      were started with the value payable system introduced in 1877, while fund remittances at the
      doorstep became possible from 1880 through money order services. With the introduction of the
      Post Office Savings Bank in 1882 banking facilities were accessible to all and by 1884 all
      government employees were covered by the postal life insurance. Besides providing postal
      communication facilities, the post office network has also provided facilities for remittance of
      funds, banking and insurance services since the latter half of the 19th century.
      Organization Overview
            The Department of Posts comes under the Ministry of Communications. The Postal Service
      Board, the apex management body of the department, comprises the Chairman and six Members.
      The six Members of the Board hold portfolios of personnel, operations, technology, postal life
      insurance, banking and HRD and planning. The Joint Secretary and Financial Advisor to the