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MAIL : A system by which letters, packages, and other postal materials are transported MAIL : To send letters and other postal material by mail. MAIL : the letters and parcels which are sent by post, or the postal system itself Mail, or post, is a method for transmitting information and tangible objects, wherein written documents, typically enclosed in envelopes and also small packages are delivered to destinations around the world. Anything sent through the postal system is called mail or post. In principle, a postal service can be private or public. Governments often place restrictions on private postal delivery systems. Since the mid-19th century national postal systems have generally been established as government monopolies with a fee on the article prepaid. Proof of payment is often in the form of adhesive postage stamps, but postage meters are also used for bulk mailing. Postal systems often have functions other than sending letters. In some countries, a Postal Telegraph and Telephone (PTT) service oversees the postal system as well as having authority over telephone and telegraph systems. Some countries' postal systems allow for savings accounts and handle applications for passports. Early postal systems Many early post systems consisted of fixed courier routes. Here, a post house on a postal route in the 19th century Finland The first documented use of an organized courier service for the diffusion of written documents is in Egypt, where Pharaohs used couriers for the diffusion of their decrees in the territory of the State (2400 BC). This practice almost certainly has roots in the much older practice of oral messaging and may have been built on a pre-existing infrastructure. Postal reforms In the United Kingdom, prior to 1840 the postal system was expensive, confusing and seen as corrupt. Letters were paid for by the recipient rather than the sender, and were charged according to the distance the letter had travelled and the number of sheets of paper it contained. If there is one man who can be said to have changed the face of the postal service forever it is Sir Rowland Hill, with his reforms of the postal system based on the concept of penny postage, and his solution of pre payment. In his proposal Hill also called for official preprinted envelopes and adhesive postage stamps as alternative ways of getting the sender to pay for the postage, at a time when prepayment was optional, which led to the invention of the postage stamp, the Penny Black. It was around this time nationalization and centralization of most postal systems took place. Today, the study of mail systems is known as postal history. Modern transportation and technology A US railway post office. The first airmail flight in Germany, 1912. The Internet came to change the conditions for physical mail. E-mail (and in recent years social networking sites) became a fierce competitor, but online auctions and Internet shopping opened new business opportunities as people often get items bought online through the mail. Postal Service In India Indian postal network is the largest in the world. For many years it has been meeting the personal and business communication needs as well as door-to-door delivery, banking, insurance, transfer of money and goods. Today, mobile phones, email, SMS are popular means for personal communication. There are many operators for customers to choose from for sending documents and goods in India and abroad. Technology has also made it possible to offer modern and affordable services to customers like instant money transfer, collection of bills, and so on. It has also been possible to bring these services to the rural sector through the vast postal network. The Department is required to meet its expenses from the revenues it earns as it operates on commercial lines. Thus it faces a daunting task ahead as Post Offices have been opened in rural and remote areas on partial recovery of costs. Further the Department is facing stiff competition in some of its businesses. To rise to the challenges, the Department is in the process of transforming itself. In the last year, the Department was able to reduce the percentage of deficit. Innovative products and services, use of the network provide modern and varied services to urban and particularly rural customers are the thrust areas for growth. Use of technology and business orientation will be the key for improvement of quality of services. The first stamps valid for postage throughout India were placed on sale in October 1854. Post Office has been a part of the day-to-day lives of people in the country. The street letter boxes, postman, post office, postcards, postage stamps, money order are words with which children and elders are familiar with. There is a strong bond between the Post Office and the people it serves. Many of the customers do business at post office because they feel comfortable and rely on it. This is what makes the postal service unique. Policy for India Post This policy has a two main approach. Develop services that assist, facilitate, enhance and quicken the process of development aimed at inclusive growth. Reposition India Post to become a self-sufficient, credible, efficient, quick and cost effective provider of these services. Types of Mail. Postal service provides many facilities like general or registered mail, parcel post, speed post, express post, e-post and special courier service known as EMS- speed post. They also offer a number of post office savings schemes like National Savings Certificate, Recurring deposits and terms deposits. Postal services not only benefit the ordinary public but also the employees serving them. Benefits of Postal Service : The benefits of sending a post are as follows --y y y y y we can track the progress of our delivery. it is less expensive. it gets delivered to the door steps of the desired destination. Now a day¶s post office also obtains signed receipts for registered, certified and insured mails, which increases the safety of the mails. Postal services also help in providing employment opportunities for the people living in rural areas.. Physical Infrastructure It will be the policy of India Post to bring its facilities within reach of every citizen in the country. Since Independence, India Post increased the number of post offices from 23,344 to 1,55,204. It is the largest postal network in the world, with one post office serving 7160 people and covering an area of approximately 21.2 sq. kms. Despite this only 1,37,508 out of 5,95,113 inhabited villages have post offices. Even if only Gram Panchayat villages are considered, only 1,15,881 of them out of a total of 2,34,755 have post offices. Conclusion India Post is committed to meeting the challenges of the economy and the need to ensure connectivity, communication and financial services to every citizen. It also emphasises the need to expand and strengthen its coverage of rural areas where 60% of the people reside and maintain their livelihoods. India Post believes that the new economy and modern markets require it to become more financially autonomous and commercially flexible in order to deliver its core functions and other services efficiently and to high standards. It believes that a new legislative framework for regulating the sector is an essential part of modernizing the sector and ensuring its orderly and disciplined functioning and growth. COURIER SERVICE : A courier is a person or a company who delivers messages, packages, and mail. A service provided by a person or company taking messages and packages from one place to another by car, motorcycle or aircraft. Couriers are distinguished from ordinary mail services by features such as speed, security, tracking, signature, specialization and individualization of services, and committed delivery times, which are optional for most everyday mail services. As a premium service, couriers are usually more expensive than usual mail services, and their use is typically restricted to packages where one or more of these features are considered important enough to warrant the cost. Different courier services operate on all scales, from within specific towns or cities, to regional, national and global services. The world's largest courier companies are Velox Express, DHL, FedEx, OBC Express Ltd., TNT N.V., UPS, and Aramex. These offer services worldwide, typically via a hub and spoke model. Objectives The primary objective of courier service is customer satisfaction. Reliability, speed of service, coverage area and value for money are some of the criteria on which the service provided by a courier company is evaluated. Courier companies are also guided by labor rights and employee principles. Couriers before the industrial era Courier or postman, Japan, hand-coloured albumen print by Felice Beato, between 1863 and 1877. In ancient times runners and homing pigeons and riders on horseback were used to deliver timely messages. Before there were mechanized courier services foot messengers physically ran miles to their destinations. To this day there are marathons directly related to actual historical messenger routes. Types of couriers : In cities, there are often bicycle couriers or motorcycle couriers but for consignments requiring delivery over greater distance networks, this may often include trucks, railways and aircraft. Many companies who operate under a Just-In-Time or "JIT" inventory method often utilize onboard couriers. Representative couriers : With the increase in fuel prices and productivity goals monitored closely by companies, this new type of all-in-one courier has developed to "take care of business". Workers in companies have more work and less time to be out of the office. Operating largely using independent contractors that have gone through a screening process and background checks have found a niche in the courier industry. Research, intransit pet care, complex paperwork filing, and a host of other services are now offered in this new category of courier service. The Benefits of Using Couriers y y y Businesses use courier services to ensure door-to-door delivery and shipments of all items, from things as simple as legal documents and letters, to bigger materials and packages. Courier services can be for within a specific city or state, or can even be nationwide or international, depending on the needs of your business. A courier service is different from typical mail service because it offers more security, faster delivery, the ability to track all items, a signature required from all receiving parties, and they can also be especially tailored to you specific business needs.