Faster, Safer Snail-Mail in India

by Rael Dornfest

"India's postal service operates 154,000 post offices, which deliver 53 million pieces of mail a day." [NY Times]

Increasingly that snail-mail is making a hop onto the Net before returning once again to paper-space.

India's Department of Posts's e-Post and Hybrid Mail, along with a host of commercial services (hotmailindia, Bharatmail, and HotDak), pass transcribed letters via email to a location nearest the recipient where they are printed out, sealed in an envelope, and hand-delivered -- or some combination thereof.

It's thanks to these services that I can communicate with family members in a village just outside the not-so-much-larger town of Kolhapur.